Smoke pours from Mexico's "Popo" volcano; 70,000 people on alert
MEXICO CITY (CNN) - A thick plume of ash and smoke belched skyward
Monday, as Mexico's giant Popocatepetl volcano rumbled for a fifth day.
Nearby residents waited again for a signal that they would be evacuated,
officials said there were no immediate plans for evacuation.
Some 70,000 people who live on the mountain's flanks are on alert. The
17,992-foot (5,452-metre) volcano located near Mexico City sent smoke
several miles (kilometers) into the air and spread a blanket of lava and fiery
rocks around the peak.
"There are not yet any orders for evacuation ... the volcano is returning
normal," a spokesman at the National Disaster Prevention Committee told
He said ash could fall on nearby villages and southern Mexico City.
The exhalation of Popocatepetl, whose name means "smoking
mountain" in the native Nahuatl Indian language, followed days of increasing
activity and was one of the biggest in recent months.
Some 18 million residents in greater Mexico City live just 40 miles (65
km) away from the volcano popularly referred to as "Popo," but officials say
the city is too far away to be in direct danger.
Reuters contributed to this report.