Volcanic Eruption in Guatemala
On 13 September 2012, Fuego volcano in Guatemala again erupted, forcing the National Coordinating Agency for Disaster Reduction (CONRED) to declare an institutional "Orange Alert" and evacuated more than 10,000 inhabitants from communities located on the foothills of this volcano. The Departmental and Municipal Coordinating Agencies for Disaster Reduction (CODRED and COMRED respectively) also decalred orange alerts within their jurisdictions as a way to prevent loss of life. Given the fact that this is the rainy season in Guatemala, CONRED also is observing this activity with a particular focus on potental lahars which may manifest themselves in the Guacalate and Achiguate rivers. Using satellite imagery from MODIS TERRA, CATHALAC, one of UN-SPIDER's Regional Support Offices, elaborated maps depicting how the ash cloud was dispersed to the west of the volcano.
On Saturday evening 19 May 2012, the volcano also manifested a strong eruption, which also led to the evacuation of several communities located on its foothills. The eruption of the 3.700 meters high volcano was one of its largest in recent years. The activity is part of an eruptive cycle producing intermittent explosive eruptions and lava flows that began in 2002. Eruptions began at 2:45 a.m. with explosions and lava fountains up to 400 meters high. The eruption produces an ash column of almost 5000 meters height prompting alerts and flight restrictions.
The National Emergency Response Commission (CONRED) of Guatemala requested UN-SPIDER's support in May 2012 in facilitating the access to satellite imagery via its network. The International Charter Space and Major Disasters was subsequently activated by the Argentina Civil Protection Agency (SIFEM) on behalf of CONRED on 21 May 2012. The activation led to the production of maps which were provided to the National Emergency Operations Center of CONRED and are available for vieing on the Charter website.