March 28, 2017

Equipment used to monitor La SourfriПre volcano vandalized

The National Emergency Management Organization (NEMO) has made an urgent plea for members of the public not to tamper with or remove any equipment that is used to monitor seismic activity at La Soufrière volcano.

This call comes after the Soufriére Monitoring Unit visited the site at Fancy last Friday, where seismic stations are installed. The wires to one of the seismic stations were cut and a seismic station installed in January was damaged. This means that no data is available from these two stations.

Dr Richard Robertson, director of the Seismic Research Centre, says “without this equipment we cannot monitor earthquakes or the volcano as effectively as we would like and this is our real concern, as La Soufriére is a volcano that must be closely monitored at all times.”

NEMO is urging anyone with information on damage to the equipment to contact the Royal St Vincent and the Grenadines Police Force at 456-2906.

“We must remember that St Vincent and the Grenadines is in a seismically active area and earthquakes can occur at any time and that La Soufrière is an active volcano; hence the seismic stations are there to provide early warnings on any activity at the volcano,” the release said.

The general public can contact NEMO or the Soufrière Monitoring Unit to learn more about earthquakes and volcanic hazards.