Tungurahua, one of the most dangerous volcanoes in South America, located in Ecuador, may soon collapse, warn volcanologists.
The previous major collapse of Tungurahua occurred about 3,000 years ago. Then this event caused a massive landslide.
Scientists fear that the collapse could happen again. Studies have shown that the activity of recent years has destabilized the western part of Tungurahua. Volcanologists note that a “crescent-shaped scar” left over from a long-standing collapse has been exposed.
“The western part of the volcano climbed 3.5 centimeters in three weeks, while the rest of its volcano remained stable,” said James Hickey, a researcher at Exeter University, one of the authors of the study.
By the way, three millennia ago, the western side of the volcano also collapsed. That ancient landslide provoked a landslide that destroyed everything within a radius of 77 kilometers. Then, over the centuries, Tungurahua rebuilt itself and now reaches a height of 5029 meters.
The name “Tungurahua” from the language of local Aboriginal people – the Quechua tribe – translates as “throat of fire”. The volcano is located 130 kilometers south of the city of Quito – the capital of Ecuador. Since 1999, Tungurahua regularly erupted, which led to the evacuation of 25 thousand residents of adjacent settlements.