82 dead as Guatemalan volcano's moderate explosions, rumbling continue
Guatemalan search and recovery teams on Wednesday found the bodies of six more people killed in the eruption of the Volcan de Fuego volcano, raising the known death toll in the disaster to 82, latinxtoday.com reports.
The bodies were found in the ruins of the community of San Miguel Los Lotes, in Escuintla province, a village that was buried under thousands of tons of volcanic material.
In addition, Guatemalan authorities said that a man who had been seriously burned in the eruption had died of his injuries.
The Volcan de Fuego volcano on Wednesday continued with its rumbling and moderate explosions after registering a powerful eruption last weekend, and Guatemalan authorities warned about the danger of avalanches on the mountain's slopes.
A report by the Insivumeh vulcanology institute issued at 8 am Wednesday said that weak to moderate explosions continue within the volcano located some 50 kilometers (31 miles) west of the capital and a column of ash reaching up to 4,700 meters (15,400 feet) was rising over it.
The institute warned that the explosions are causing avalanches on the slopes of the volcano, which is 3,763 meters (more than 12,340 feet) high.
Insivumeh also said that rain that has fallen in the area and the accumulation of material belched out by the fire mountain could cause sudden landslides."It's probable that the first 'lahars' (volcanic lava flows) will be hot and will be transporting fine material similar to cement and rocks up to a meter (about 3.3 feet) in diameter and tree trunks ripped out by the flow affecting the communities located on the sides of ravines," the agency said.
Insivumeh said that the volcanic activity is continuing and did not rule out new pyroclastic flows in the coming hours.
Meanwhile, in its latest report on Wednesday, the Conred national disaster coordinator said that 75 people - later raised to 82 - were known to have died amid the ongoing emergency, 44 have been injured, 12,089 evacuated and more than 1.7 million affected. Moreover, 192 people are missing and 3,319 are being housed in government-outfitted shelters.
Rescue brigades on Wednesday resumed their searches for victims and the missing.
The provinces most heavily affected by the eruption, with its pyroclastic flows and heavy ashfall, have been Escuintla, Chimaltenango and Sacatepequez, all of which have been declared disaster areas and remain on red alert.