21 Oct 2009

Residents on Vanuatu island banned from volcano

8:08 am on 21 October 2009

Residents on Vanuatu's Gaua Island are banned from going near the volcano on the island's centre after its alert level was increased to two.

The level was upgraded from one last week after volcanologists measured a rise in seismic ativity.

Volcanologist, Douglas Charley, says the Gaua volcano is going through an eruptive phase and his team is monitoring its activity closely.

He says there's no danger for the residents yet.

"In that state of alert we ban all the visits near the crater for this volcano. Some of the water samples have been collected. We've measured it, the quality of water, we assume is still OK for people to use."

Douglas Charley there's an evacuation plan in place should the volcano's activity increase further.