Report on Fuego (Guatemala) — 10 February-16 February 2016
Smithsonian / US Geological Survey Weekly Volcanic Activity Report,
10 February-16 February 2016
Managing Editor: Sally Kuhn Sennert
Please cite this report as:
Global Volcanism Program, 2016. Report on Fuego (Guatemala). In: Sennert, S K (ed.), Weekly Volcanic Activity Report, 10 February-16 February 2016. Smithsonian Institution and US Geological Survey.
14.473°N, 90.88°W; summit elev. 3763 m
All times are local (unless otherwise noted)
In a special report, INSIVUMEH noted that the third episode of effusive activity at Fuego for 2016 had ended at 1830 on 10 February. Afterward some minor explosions generated ash plumes that rose 450 m above the crater and drifted 10 km NNE. Lava flows had traveled 3 km down the Las Lajas drainage (SE) and in the Trinidad drainage (S). During 11-16 February explosions generated ash plumes that rose 350-550 m and drifted almost 11 km W, SW, S, and SE.
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.