Rincón de la Vieja Volcano Erupts, Reaching a Height of 3 Kilometers - Expat Community

Rincón de la Vieja Volcano Erupts, Reaching a Height of 3 Kilometers

Aug 29, 2023 | Costa Rica, News & Articles | 0 comments

The Rincón de la Vieja volcano in Costa Rica erupted on the morning of August 25th. As reported by the Volcanological and Seismological Observatory of Costa Rica (Ovsicori) from the Universidad Nacional (UNA), the eruption produced a column of gases and vapors rising 3 kilometers above the crater. This significant event, which took place at 8:28 a.m., was captured on surveillance cameras positioned near the volcano. According to Henriette Bakkar, a geologist at Ovsicori, the eruption was primarily steam-driven and did not produce ash or associated lahars. The eruption’s power suggests that the eruptive column might be less than 1,000 meters high, but this couldn’t be verified due to weather conditions.

Prior to this major eruption, three smaller eruptions were recorded. The Rincón de la Vieja volcano, situated 23 kilometers from Liberia in the Guanacaste mountain range, is currently the country’s most active. Its unique tilted crater, leaning towards the northeast, means eruptions and their sonic waves are primarily directed towards areas like Buenos Aires de Upala, Dos Ríos de Upala, and the Agro Sur settlement, among others.

Despite the explosive nature of its eruptions, the primary danger associated with Rincón de la Vieja is the lahars – mudflows primarily consisting of ash that flow into nearby rivers such as Pénjamo, Azufrado, and Azul. These lahars can result in hot or toxic avalanches, posing significant risks to neighboring communities. Past eruptions, such as the one in 1995, caused considerable damage, destroying several bridges. Recent eruptions have also been known to eject incandescent rocks with temperatures exceeding 200 degrees Celsius.


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