Popocatepetl Eruption


Latest news:

April 18, 2012:
Alert level is 3 out of 7, prompting preparation for evacuations and relief.


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2012 Popocatepetl eruption could cause regional issues.

Popocatepetl becomes more active in early 2012, leading scientists to prepare for major eruption.

Even though a major eruption of Popocatepetl in Mexico is not a certainty, authorities are not taking any chances and have raised the alert level for this volcano. Eruptions of this volcano type can produce dangerous incandescent (ultra hot) gas clouds that incinerate anything in their paths. They can create major ash clouds, landslides, and unusual floods known as lahars which are essentially mud and rock flows mixed with water that can be deadly, since they carry so much weight and can destroy anything downstream. In the case of Mount St. Helens in 1980, a lahar destroyed bridges and lumber camps downstream and clogged the Columbia river for days with ash and trees. These pyroclastic mud flows can firm up like concrete once they stop, and may ruin farmland or populated areas since they are difficult to remove. Volcanoes like Popocatepetl can have a devastating economic impact to local residents, who may be subsistence farmers, and ash can be especially deadly to livestock on which residents depend.

Notes and Special Information

Special note: Earthquakes and eruptions in Mexico have some people talking about the beginning of the 2012 apocalypse, but in reality Mexico has always had volcanoes and earthquakes and in past years there have been worse eruptions and quakes that killed thousands.