Fogo, a volcano in the Cape Verde archipelago located off the coast of West Aftica, started erupting around 11:00 UTC on Sunday, November 23, 2014, after almost 20 years of calm period. The eruption prompted nation's prime minister Jose Maria Neves to call for evacuations of Cha das Caldeiras on the slopes of the volcano. Toulouse VAAC has set Aviation Color Code to Red.
Neves said in yesterday's statement that the eruption is at the same place where last eruption occurred in 1995 and that it seems much stronger. He explained that meteorological and geophysical services have been warning that seismic activity has intensified few days before the eruption started.
According to data received, the eruption is comparable or stronger to that of 1951 and things could further deteriorate, Neves said.
"We've called on people to heed the authorities' instructions. People should abandon Cha das Caldeiras," Neves said referring to a hillside community.
Animation below shows the ash cloud as observed by EUMETSAT's Meteostat-10 satellite from 04:15 UTC on November 23 - 15:15 UTC on November 24 and shown in the RGB dust product, a real-time view of which can be found here: http://oiswww.eumetsat.org/IPPS/html/MSG/RGB/DUST/index.htm
A photograph posted on the local RTC TV station website showed a huge plume of smoke rising into the sky, visible from the capital Praia on a neighboring island. (Reuters)
Fogo eruption on November 23, 2014. Image credit: TCV
The island of Fogo consists of a single massive stratovolcano that is the most prominent of the Cape Verde Islands. The roughly circular 25-km-wide island is truncated by a large 9-km-wide caldera that is breached to the east and has a headwall 1 km high. The caldera is located asymmetrically NE of the center of the island and was formed as a result of massive lateral collapse of the ancestral Monte Armarelo edifice.
A very youthful steep-sided central cone, Pico, rises more than 1 km above the caldera floor to about 100 m above the caldera rim, forming the 2829 m high point of the island. Pico, which is capped by a 500-m-wide, 150-m-deep summit crater, was apparently in almost continuous activity from the time of Portuguese settlement in 1500 CE until around 1760. Later historical lava flows, some from vents on the caldera floor, reached the eastern coast below the breached caldera. (GVP)