Ecuador and Guatemala volcanoes erupt

May 30, 2010

In Ecuador, the Tungurahua volcano exploded into action on Friday, forcing evacuation of at least seven villages and closing down the airport and public schools in Guayaquil, the country’s largest and most populated city.

On the same day in Guatemala the Pacaya volcano erupted killing three and prompting President Alvaro Colom to declare a 15-day state of emergency. Guatemala’s La Aurora International Airport was closed because the runways and surrounding areas had to be cleaned of ash.
The airport closures were reminiscent of the massive blanket of ash Iceland’s Eyjafjoell volcano spewed out last month causing the biggest aerial shutdown in Europe since WWII. According to the International Air Transport Association the number of passengers in Europe slumped 11.7% in April and a global drop of 2.4%. As a result airliners have suffered tens of millions of euros in lost revenues.
Even though Eyjafjoell has not spewed ash since the beginning of the week, experts say it is too early to declare the end of the volcano’s eruption.
Meanwhile, a report from the University College London institute pointed out Friday that Eyjafjoell’s neighboring volcano Katla could erupt in the near future.
(Source: Dispatches)