Mexico’s active Popocatepetl volcano has registered a massive explosion spewing ash and incandescent rock almost 4 kilometers high. Authorities have warned that winds could blow the ash cloud as far away as Mexico City.
Inhabitants of villages up to 25 kilometers from Popocatepetl (colloquially known as ‘Don Popo’) rushed out of their houses when the massive explosion reverberated through their homes.
Esther Matinez, resident of Amecameca municipality, told Mexican publication La Jornada that the blast was like a rocket explosion. Around 4.5 million people live within a 50-kilometer radius of the active volcano, 650,000 of whom are considered to be at high risk.
According to authorities in the state of Puebla, where the second-tallest volcano in Mexico is located, the incandescent fragments released in the blast fell as far as 2 kilometers from the crater. Director of Puebla’s Civil Protection department Jesus Morales said that burning rocks sparked small fires around the volcano.
“There were clouds at the time of the eruption so it was possible to observe the large shock wave accompanied by a plume of ash and incandescent material,” Morales said.
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