Two volcanoes have erupted in Guatemala and Ecuador, forcing thousands of people to run away from their homes. In Guatemala, the Pacaya volcano erupted two days ago, spewing lava, rocks and debris. At least two people were killed and more than 50 sustained injuries.
In Ecuador, the Tungurahua volcano started spewing hot lava forcing the villagers to run away from their homes. The authorities have shut the airport and schools in Guayaquil, the country’s largest city. In Guatemala, at least 1,700 people have abandoned their homes and President Alvaro Colom has declared a state of emergency in Escuintla region, Guatemala City and areas surrounding the capital.
The president confirmed that people had died and three children were missing. In the village of Calderas, which is close to the erupting volcano, Brenda Castaneda said her family took shelter under furniture as molten rocks fell on her house. “We thought we wouldn’t survive. Our houses crumbled and we’ve lost everything,” she told the Associated Press from a temporary shelter.
The Guatamela’s main international airport has been closed because the volcano has covered parts of Guatemala City in ash. Seismologists have warned of more eruptions “in the coming days” from Pacaya. Notably, Pacaya is one of the most active volcanos in Central America.
Meanwhile, the Tungurahua volcano in Ecquador sent ash plumes six miles (10km) into the air. Several thousand people living in villages near the volcano have left their homes. The volcano is located 95 miles (150km) south-east of the capital Quito.
Country’s main airport has been shut down as strong winds blew the ash over the country’s most populous city, Guayaquil. Julio Castro, a Guayaquil resident said that he was worried about the health of children. “Suddenly, without warning, the ash started to fall, and it was heavy, some even got into my eyes,” he told the Associated Press. He added, “I can’t see well now, it is annoying and we are worried for the children, above all.”