Guatemala volcano: Death toll rises to 25, ash blankets nearby villages
Guatemala City, Jun 4: The death toll from the eruption of Guatemala's Fuego volcano rose to 25 today, the country's disaster agency said.
"The toll was 25 dead as of 9:00 pm (0300 GMT)," the spokesman for the National Coordinator for Disaster Reduction (Conred) said in a WhatsApp group.
One of Central America's most active volcanos erupted in fiery explosions of ash and molten rock. A towering cloud of smoke blanketed nearby villages in heavy ash.
National Disaster Coordinator Sergio Cabanas said an undetermined number of people were missing following yesterday's eruption of the Volcan de Fuego, Spanish for "volcano of fire," which lies 44 kilometres from Guatemala City.
Ash was falling on the Guatemala City area as well as the departments of Sacatepequez, Chimaltenango and Escuintla, which are in south-central Guatemala around the volcano. Streets and houses were covered in the colonial town of Antigua, a popular tourist destination. Aviation authorities closed the capital's international airport because of the danger posed to planes by the ash. The conical Volcan de Fuego reaches an altitude of 12,346 feet (3,763 metres) above sea level at its peak.