Published: Sun, June 10, 2018
Global News | By Blake Casey

Recriminations in Guatemala as Volcano Death Toll Reaches 99

Recriminations in Guatemala as Volcano Death Toll Reaches 99

A church in New Hampshire is collecting donations to help the thousands of people left homeless from a destructive volcanic eruption in Guatemala.

Guatemala's seismology and volcanology institute is warning of new volcanic flows on the western slope of the Volcano of Fire.

Officials are crossing-checking census data with aerial photos of homes, registers of people in shelters and lists of the missing and injured, Cabanas said.

"It costs us a lot to identify them because some of the deceased lost their features or fingerprints (due to the lava and ash)", Fanuel Garcia, the director of the National Institute of Forensic Science said. The church has a mission in nearby Antigua, where church officials have been sending truckloads of supplies.

Disaster officials began monitoring increased activity at the Volcano of Fire on Sunday morning but initially said no evacuations were necessary.

Orlando Paez plans never to go back to his hamlet of San Miguel Los Lotes, where he narrowly escaped an onrushing river of superheated volcanic ash as his dying neighbours screamed for help.

The White House added it will coordinate with the Guatemalan government and send additional aid if needed. They have not been heard from since the eruption.

"We looked for them in shelters, hospitals, everywhere, but we did not find them", said Chávez, 34, wiping a tear from his eye as the others used sticks and bits of broken boards to dig at the collapsed, ash-filled home.

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In his words: "Nobody is going to be able to get them out nor say how many are buried here".

Other families experienced similar tragedies.

Residents of the town of El Rodeo, who had recently returned to their homes, were told to leave once again, and people were warned to avoid canyons and areas close to the volcano.

It also noted that 72 hours had passed since Sunday's eruption.

It set off lahars-fast-flowing mixtures of rock, debris, ash and water-and red-hot pyroclastic flows, which buried several nearby villages.

-- Six children flown to Texas for treatmentAUS Air Force C-17 carried six Guatemalan children badly burned in the volcanic eruption to Texas for treatment.

David de Leon, a spokesman for the national disaster management agency, CONRED, instead residents should continue to steer clear from risky areas in the region.

The search for survivors from deadly eruptions of Guatemala's Fuego volcano has been temporarily suspended due to unsafe conditions for rescue workers.

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