22 September 1998
Mexico's Popocatepetl volcano rumbles, spews ash

                  MEXICO CITY (Reuters) -- Mexico's Popocatepetl volcano Tuesday
                  rumbled and spewed ash that could fall on Mexico City if prevailing winds
                  do not change, the country's interior ministry said.

                  "If winds stay at the current speed and direction, this afternoon and tonight a
                  light rain of ash could fall over Mexico City," a statement from the ministry

                  The ministry said, however, that the volcano remained "stable" and the
                  government's amber warning alert remained in effect. A red alert would
                  force the evacuation of nearby villages and towns.

                  The 17,992-foot volcano, whose name means "smoking mountain" in the
                  Nahuatl Indian language, lies 40 miles southeast of the capital and has been
                  threatening an eruption for years.

                  In June 1997 it covered Mexico City with a thin film of ash and temporarily
                  closed the international airport. "Popo," as the volcano is commonly known,
                  has spat out mile-high clouds of ash and smoke several times this year.

                  Copyright 1998 Reuters Limited.