Mexico volcano prompts evacuations

Other News Materials 12 July 2015 10:35 (UTC +04:00)

Hundreds of people have been evacuated from the areas around Colima Volcano in western Mexico amid fears that ongoing eruptions might escalate, PressTV reported.

On Saturday, Mexican authorities said that more than 80 people from communities in the western Mexican state of Colima and as many as 150 others from neighboring state of Jalisco have been evacuated as the volcano is spewing more ash and lava.

The evacuation has been ordered in an area up to a radius of 12 kilometers around the crater. Traffic in the area is also restricted.

"The communities in this 12-kilometer radius are very small and don't exceed 800 inhabitants," said Luis Felipe Puente, a national civil protection coordinator.

The volcano's activity has escalated since it erupted late on Thursday. The volcano spewed out a column of four-kilometer (2.5-mile) ash late on Friday.

Mexico's Interior Ministry said the volcanic activity was "atypical, presenting conditions similar to those of 1913," when a huge eruption happened and covered the region with ash.

The ministry further predicted that the activity may gradually wane in the coming weeks, or a 1913-like explosion might happen or the volcano's dome might collapse.

Mario Anguiano Moreno, the governor of Colima, said that flights in the city of Colima have been limited to private and commercial ones "due to falling ash in the area."

According to Mexican authorities, up to five centimeters (nearly two inches) of ash was tumbled down in the village of Yerbabuena, located at the foot of the volcano.

The residents in the city Colima have been forced to wear masks.