Saint Lucia is stepping up its response plans as the dome at La Soufrière volcano in Saint Vincent and the Grenadines continues to grow, officials here say.
The National Emergency Management Organisation (NEMO) of Saint Vincent and the Grenadines in its 8.00 pm bulletin on Saturday, encouraged residents, especially persons living in communities close to the volcano, to be prepared in the event that it becomes necessary to evacuate at short notice.
But NEMO said the authorities have issued no evacuation order or notice.
And the organisation disclosed that the alert level remained at Orange.
Saint Lucia disaster officials say they held an emergency virtual meeting on Saturday to review the situation in Saint Vincent and the Grenadines.
As a result, they say they are ramping up plans in the event that this country has to receive evacuees.
In addition, local officials have said that they are also advancing plans to respond to the needs of residents of Dennery to Soufriere.
The officials explained that in the event that La Soufrière explodes, those residents will experience ash and air quality issues depending on the direction of the wind.
Therefore local disaster planners have already identified shelters for those residents and others who may have to evacuate.
They say the planning has taken COVID-19 protocols into account.
According to Saturday’s NEMO bulletin out of Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, the period of elevated volcano-tectonic earthquakes which began on 23 March 2021 stopped on March 26, 2021.
However, it observed that the new dome continues to grow towards the Leeward and Windward sides of the Volcano with the most active gas emissions being at the top of the new dome.