The Trinidad and Tobago government will be sending three scientists from the UWI Seismic Research Centre to St Vincent and the Grenadines (SVG) to assist with monitoring of the La Soufriere volcano, which began showing signs of activity on Tuesday.
Speaking during a media conference in Kingstown on Tuesday, St Vincent and the Grenadines PM Ralph Gonsalves read an e-mail from National Security Minister Stuart Young which said approval has been granted for a three-member team from the UWI Seismic Research Centre – comprising Lloyd Lynch, Prof Richard Robertson and Ian Juman – to go to the island. The UWI unit is based in St Augustine, Trinidad.
Speaking to the scientists via video conference, Gonsalves said, “The regional security system aircraft is ready any time you clear your covid (status), so we can see you up here tomorrow (Wednesday), sometime before sundown. We’ll sleep tonight without you fairly well but we want you here tomorrow, and you’ll bring the instruments.”
Gonsalves said all residents living close to the volcano were asked to make all necessary preparations to evacuate in case an order is given.
“I want to emphasise that no evacuation order is being given. This is really an alert because of the increased activity taking place at La Soufriere, with the effusive eruption internally and the heat and steam which is coming out.”
He advised residents to keep track of the alerts from the National Emergency Management Organisation and also not to tempt fate by visiting the volcano.
“Nobody should be up there, and if you are, you have to come out, because the place will be very hot. All recreational visits to the volcano have to be suspended with immediate effect. Please, I’m asking you to refrain from visiting the volcano at this time due not only to the heat itself, but the strong sulphur can affect your respiratory system and of course you don’t want to be there if you have a strong explosive eruption. That’s why you can’t go and tempt fate.”