Report on Fuego (Guatemala) — 24 September-30 September 2008
Smithsonian / US Geological Survey Weekly Volcanic Activity Report,
24 September-30 September 2008
Managing Editor: Sally Kuhn Sennert
Please cite this report as:
Global Volcanism Program, 2008. Report on Fuego (Guatemala). In: Sennert, S K (ed.), Weekly Volcanic Activity Report, 24 September-30 September 2008. Smithsonian Institution and US Geological Survey.
14.473°N, 90.88°W; summit elev. 3763 m
All times are local (unless otherwise noted)
Based on information from the Tegucigalpa MWO, the Washington VAAC reported that on 18 September a possible ash plume from Fuego rose to an altitude of 4.3 km (14,000 ft) a.s.l. and drifted SSW. INSIVUMEH reported on 24 September that a lava flow traveled 300 m W towards the Seca ravine. Avalanches were generated from the lava flow front. Explosions generated ash plumes that rose to an altitude of 4.1 km (13,500 ft) a.s.l. and drifted W.
Geological Summary. Volcán Fuego, one of Central America's most active volcanoes, is also one of three large stratovolcanoes overlooking Guatemala's former capital, Antigua. The scarp of an older edifice, Meseta, lies between Fuego and Acatenango to the north. Construction of Meseta dates back to about 230,000 years and continued until the late Pleistocene or early Holocene. Collapse of Meseta may have produced the massive Escuintla debris-avalanche deposit, which extends about 50 km onto the Pacific coastal plain. Growth of the modern Fuego volcano followed, continuing the southward migration of volcanism that began at the mostly andesitic Acatenango. Eruptions at Fuego have become more mafic with time, and most historical activity has produced basaltic rocks. Frequent vigorous historical eruptions have been recorded since the onset of the Spanish era in 1524, and have produced major ashfalls, along with occasional pyroclastic flows and lava flows.