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El Salvador begins evacuations near volcano

Salvador Volcano
SAN SALVADOR, El Salvador (AP) - Authorities in El Salvador evacuated an area around the Chaparrastique volcano after the peak shot a cloud of gas and ash about 3 miles (5 kilometers) into the air on Sunday.

Civil Defense Director Jorge Melendez said a yellow alert had been issued and investigators had been sent to the area to look for signs of fresh lava, but that none has been detected so far.

"We have implemented emergency measures to evacuate villages located within 3 kilometers of the volcano," Melendez said. Shelters have been set up for the evacuees, but Melendez said some inhabitants had been loath to leave their homes. "One has to leave for one's own safety," he said.

Assistant Health Minister Eduardo Espinoza said two people had been treated at hospitals for respiratory problems apparently linked to the eruption, "but we do not have any serious cases to report."

"We are providing assistance to people evacuating, and we are asking them to protect themselves against the gases, which can affect the respiratory tract," Espinoza said. He also urged inhabitants near the volcano to avoid drinking from local water sources.

The 7,025-foot (2,129-meter) volcano is located about 90 miles (145 kilometers) east of San Salvador, the capital. Its last significant eruption was in 1976.

San Miguel is one of the country's largest cities and is located 30 miles (50 kilometers) from the volcano.

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guskids07 December 30 2013 at 12:43 AM

Praying for my family!

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clamarflores December 30 2013 at 4:36 AM

May this not evolve to a dangerous event. Blessings to everyone that is affected in the area.

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franklarkin1964 December 29 2013 at 7:23 PM

50-100 miles is the danger zone. flash floods rocks ash, and gasses are deadly.

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Yolanda December 30 2013 at 1:09 AM

Family is I Mexico right ow but return to San Miguel Tuesday> I hope they stay safe.

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Handgunner December 29 2013 at 9:22 PM

Volcanoes have been around since day one. Yes they do add to global warming but we humans have added to the issue.
Volcanoes are Mother Nature's way of venting off the built up pressure and the heat in the Earth's core.We will not be around to see it but as the core cools it not be global warming to worry about, but global cooling ...

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1 reply
alphainspect Handgunner December 30 2013 at 12:00 AM

Global warming has been happening since the end of the last ice age. Why don't people understand this? This is why those like Al Gore become rich from fear mongering.

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wordsandaction December 29 2013 at 6:50 PM

correction; December 29,2013 , Sunday

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2 replies
donahuepapad123 wordsandaction December 29 2013 at 11:44 PM

WE HAVE 15 minutes left ??? hope i get to go on the first trip ???

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Lynn wordsandaction December 29 2013 at 11:52 PM

every year after Christmas the world is going to end, please stop the bible says we will not know when or where it will start.

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danielisticall December 29 2013 at 8:18 PM

"I have flown twice over Mount St. Helens out on our West Coast. I'm not a scientist and I don't know the figures, but I have a suspicion that that one little mountain has probably released more sulfur dioxide into the atmosphere of the world than has been released in the last ten years of automobile driving or things of that kind that people are so concerned about."

- President Ronald Reagan, 1980

Not quite. Cars emit about 81,000 tons of sulfur dioxide per day, while Mount St. Helens emitted only about 2,000 tons.

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1 reply
bcnryan danielisticall December 30 2013 at 12:28 AM

from a USGS website
An estimated 1.5 million metric tons of sulfur dioxide gas was discharged by Mount St. Helens during the explosive eruption of 18 May 1980. Thus, approximately 2 million metric tons of sulfur dioxide was released during the whole eruption sequence.
http://volcanoes.usgs.gov/activity/methods/gas/msh1980-88.php

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Lmrphoto December 29 2013 at 9:38 PM

The comments on this matter are interesting. I'm no expert but, it doesn't seem a safe distance to relocate humans from this soon to be, eruption! And, as far as HE IS COMING BACK! This phase is generously used whenever a preacher needs a large donation. It was used a thousand years ago and it is still used today. In fact, it is the most used warning on earth.

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1 reply
ListentoLynn Lmrphoto December 30 2013 at 6:57 AM

sorry, but ....."who is coming back?" a warning of what?

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stvhndyman December 30 2013 at 4:12 AM

Wasn't El Salvador recently rated as "One of the best places to retire"?

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frenchladyb December 30 2013 at 1:39 AM

Yolanda , I will pray for your family that they will return home safely

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