Report on San Vicente (El Salvador) — 14 February-20 February 2001

Smithsonian / US Geological Survey Weekly Volcanic Activity Report, 14 February-20 February 2001
Managing Editor: Gari Mayberry

Please cite this report as:

Global Volcanism Program, 2001. Report on San Vicente (El Salvador). In: Mayberry, G (ed.), Weekly Volcanic Activity Report, 14 February-20 February 2001. Smithsonian Institution and US Geological Survey.

Volcano Profile |  Weekly Report (14 February-20 February 2001)


San Vicente

El Salvador

13.595°N, 88.837°W; summit elev. 2182 m

All times are local (unless otherwise noted)


There were reports of volcanic activity at San Vicente volcano after a M 6.6 earthquake occurred at 1422 on 13 February. The earthquake caused more than 25 landslides on the flanks of the volcano that reportedly killed 39 people. The Centro de Investigaciones Geot├ęcnicas investigated the activity reports and determined that no volcanic activity had occurred. In addition, the government reported that there was no volcanic activity at San Miguel, San Salvador, or Santa Ana volcanoes.

Geologic Background. The twin peaks of San Vicente volcano, also known as Chichontepec, rise dramatically to the SE of Lake Ilopango. The modern andesitic stratovolcano was constructed within the Pleistocene La Carbonera caldera, whose rim is visible only on its SW side. San Vicente volcano, the second highest in El Salvador, grew within the caldera to form a paired volcano with summit craters oriented along a WSW-ENE line. The northern and southern flanks are covered by lava flows from the central vent, but lava flows on the eastern side originated from a vent on the upper flank. Volcanism has continued into the Holocene, but the latest lava flows are covered by deposits from the major ca. 260 CE eruption from neighboring Ilopango. Reports of historical eruptions in 1643 and 1835 are false (Catalog of Active Volcanoes of the World; Sapper, 1917), but numerous hot springs and fumaroles are found on the northern and western flanks.

Sources: La Prensa Grafica, Servicio Nacional de Estudios Territoriales (SNET), US Geological Survey Earthquake Hazards Program, US Geological Survey Volcano Disaster Assistance Program (VDAP), Diario del Hoy (elsalvador.com)