Natael Loría yesterday washed off ash that fell on one of the horses on the Montero Family Creamery in Central Turrialba. This laborer is one of 10 that remain in that village, 6 km from the crater. Photo:  Ctistian Araya
Natael Loría yesterday washed off ash that fell on one of the horses on the Montero Family Creamery in Central Turrialba. This laborer is one of 10 that remain in that village, 6 km from the crater. Photo: Ctistian Araya

COSTA RICA NEWS — The Comisión Nacional de Emergencias (CNE) has established a five kilometre ring around the Turrialba volcano, the area most prone to falling material expelled by the colossus.

Lidier Esquivel Valverde, head of prevention at the CNE, said that the volcano continues to emit gas and ash, and the measures are taken to avoid affecting humans and animals.

“We are maintaining a yellow alert, and restricted access to the National Park. Animal management and contingency plans of crops have to be maintained for several days mores,” said the official.

The concern of the CNE is also the effect of gas and ash spreading to populated areas, spread by the wind.

Reports of ash and the smell of gas are coming in from all areas around the volcano, and including the Central Valley, like La Guacima, in Alajuela, west of the international airport and Heredia.

Communities around the volcano, like La Central de Santa Cruz, Turrialba, at six kilometres from the colossus, have been evacuated. Only a small number of workers caring for livestock in the dairy farms have stayed behind.

Esquivel said that roofs of houses and sheds are showing damage due to corrosion caused by ash and gases.

José Ulloa Durán, a peón (laborer) in the area, told La Nacion he considers normal what is happening. “Wednesday it ‘jodío’ (Spanish for f***d) all night, but nothing happens here,” he said. Meanwhile, Javier Coto Zúñiga, who has been renting a farm only three kilometres from the volcano, expressed his concern of the lack of pasture for his 13 dairy cows. “Our concern is that there is no food for the animals,” said Zuñiga.

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