The Colombian Geological Service (SGC) reported that seismic activity in the Nevado del Ruiz volcano has experienced an increase in the number of earthquakes and seismic energy. Although the surface activity shows certain changes, such as the dispersion of gases and ash towards the northwest, the height of the gas and ash column reached 900 meters and the degassing of sulfur dioxide and water vapor continues. During the last 26 hours, an increase in the number of earthquakes and in the seismic energy released has been observed compared to the previous day.
According to the SGC report, the seismic activity associated with the fracturing of rock inside the volcano has experienced an increase in the number of earthquakes and in the seismic energy released. The earthquakes have been located mainly at a distance of approximately 3 and 4 km to the west-northwest of the Arenas crater, at depths between 4 and 5 km. The largest registered earthquake was 1.0 and occurred at 01:37 pm, at a distance of 3.7 km to the west-northwest of the Arenas crater, with a depth of 5 km from the top of the volcano.
Additionally, smaller earthquakes have been recorded in the Arenas crater, which are related to the activity of the lava dome located at its bottom.
Regarding the seismic activity associated with the movement of fluids in the volcanic conduits, similar levels have been observed in the number of earthquakes and in the seismic energy released compared to May 31.
Regarding surface activity, a maximum height of the gas and/or ash column of 900 meters has been observed, measured from the top of the volcano. The direction of dispersion of these gases and ashes continues to be preferential towards the northwest of the volcanic edifice. In addition, the degassing of sulfur dioxide (SO2) and the emission of water vapor from the crater into the atmosphere continue.
Although there has been a general decrease in seismic activity compared to previous weeks, this does not imply that the volcano has returned to normal levels.
Detection of significant thermal anomalies at the bottom of the crater by satellites indicates the presence of very hot material near the surface. Likewise, the recurrence of ash emissions, both pulsatile and continuous, the persistence of a slight deformation of the terrain and the variations in the emission of sulfur dioxide indicate that the volcano could still experience a major eruption in the coming days or weeks.
At the moment, the activity level of the volcano remains in Orange, in case there is an acceleration of the processes that suggest an imminent eruption or the eruption itself, the activity level will be changed to Red.