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Report on Soufriere St. Vincent (Saint Vincent and the Grenadines) — 23 February-1 March 2005

Smithsonian / US Geological Survey Weekly Volcanic Activity Report, 23 February-1 March 2005
Managing Editor: Gari Mayberry

Please cite this report as:

Global Volcanism Program, 2005. Report on Soufriere St. Vincent (Saint Vincent and the Grenadines). In: Mayberry, G (ed.), Weekly Volcanic Activity Report, 23 February-1 March 2005. Smithsonian Institution and US Geological Survey.

Volcano Profile |  Weekly Report (23 February-1 March 2005)


Soufriere St. Vincent

Saint Vincent and the Grenadines

13.33°N, 61.18°W; summit elev. 1220 m

All times are local (unless otherwise noted)


According to a news article, residents of the island of St.Vincent reported smelling sulfur in towns as far S as Kingstown. This sparked fears among the population that volcanic activity had increased at Soufriere St. Vincent. Staff from the Soufriere Monitoring Unit of the Seismic Research Unit visited the volcano and reported that there was no increase in volcanic activity according to monitoring-station data and observations. The increased scent of sulfur in towns was attributed to a southward shift in wind direction towards the towns, rather than the usual E direction. Accordingly, the Alert Level remained low at Soufriere St. Vincent.

Geologic Background. Soufrière St. Vincent is the northernmost and youngest volcano on St. Vincent Island. The NE rim of the 1.6-km wide summit crater is cut by a crater formed in 1812. The crater itself lies on the SW margin of a larger 2.2-km-wide Somma crater, which is breached widely to the SW as a result of slope failure. Frequent explosive eruptions since about 4300 years ago produced pyroclastic deposits of the Yellow Tephra Formation, which blanket much of the island. The first historical eruption took place in 1718; it and the 1812 eruption produced major explosions. Much of the northern end of the island was devastated by a major eruption in 1902 that coincided with the catastrophic Mont Pelée eruption on Martinique. A lava dome was emplaced in the summit crater in 1971 during a strictly effusive eruption, forming an island in a lake that filled the crater prior to an eruption in 1979. The lake was then largely ejected during a series of explosive eruptions, and the dome was replaced with another.

Source: Caribbean Net News