This is the explosive moment Mexico’s Popocatepetl volcano erupts with a fireball along with a huge plume of ash and stunning images appear to show lava surrounding the crater.
The National Centre for the Prevention of Disasters has confirmed the explosion took place on 9th January, around 6.33 am at the Popocatepetl volcano, located next to Mexico City, Mexican capital, in the centre of the country.
The explosion caused the expulsion of ash content and a three-kilometre high smoke column over the crater.
The images show the moment the volcano explodes into life with a fireball sending a plume of smoke into the air.
Other images show incandescent material strewn across the top of the volcano in the explosion. Local media report lava was expelled from the crater.
Images taken from the surrounding cities show the huge plume of smoke high in the sky.
The alert level around the volcano has been set at Yellow Alert Phase 2, with a warning not to come close to the volcano and follow recommendations due to the ashfall.
The alert also means incandescent fragments could be expelled from the volcano up to a few kilometres from the crater with the possibility of mudflows but evacuation is not necessary.
The authorities recommend residents to cover their nose and mouth with a wet handkerchief in this alert level.
Popocatepetl stands at 5,426 metres (17,802 feet) tall and is one of the most active volcanoes in Mexico. Its name comes from the Nahuatl language and means ‘Smoking Mountain’.
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