Caribbean: The terror of volcanoes can be observed in St Vincent and Grenadines, but this is not the terminal, as there is a total of 19 volcanoes that are likely to erupt in the eastern-part of the Caribbean, which includes 11 islands, revealed by Seismic Research Centre.
Surveys reveal that every island from Grenada to Saba is a direct threat to highly horrific volcanic eruptions. But the question is:
What is the reason behind the volcanic eruptions?
Deep within the Earth, it is so hot that rocks gradually melt and become a thick fluid substance called ‘magma’. Since its fluidity is lighter in weight than the solid rock around it, magma ascends and accumulates magma chambers. Ultimately, some of the magma forces through apertures and notches to the Earth’s surface.
Soufriere Hills, Montserrat (most active volcano)
Now, there are numerous volcanoes that made horrendous state of the Caribbean in the past. For example; The region’s most dynamic volcano has been Soufriere Hills which is situated in Montserrat, which has exploded continuously since the year 1995, slaughtering the capital of Plymouth and annihilating at least 19 individuals in the year 1997.
La Grande Soufrière, Guadeloupe (biggest volcano of Caribbean)
La Grande Soufrière, Guadeloupe, is considered the biggest volcano in the Caribbean region. It is the tallest as it rises at 1467 m above sea-level, and it resides on the island of Basse-Terre.
Jamaica is a product of prehistoric volcanoes
Jamaica is assumed to be the product of pre-historic volcanoes. The Blue and John Crow Mountains-range’s central range includes metamorphic rock that has exerted through surrounding lime-stone during the land ascension from the seafloor.
The Dominican Republic has 3 volcanoes; on the other hand, Haiti has 2 volcanoes.
Seismic Research Centre stated that Islands such as Grenada, St. Vincent, St. Eustatius and Saba have ‘live’ volcanic centres. Other islands such as Anguilla, Antigua, Barbuda, Barbados, St. Lucia, Martinique, Dominica, Guadeloupe, Montserrat, Nevis, St. Kitts, British Virgin Islands, most of the Grenadines and Trinidad & Tobago (which are not volcanic) are close to volcanic islands. Hence, they are likely to encounter volcano hazards due to ashfalls.
Why there are volcanoes in the eastern part of the Caribbean?
The Earth’s crust is composed of slabs of a substance called plates which move relative to each other. The Eastern Caribbean islands lies on the a-plate boundary. The North American Plate, which is the thicker of the two, sinks beneath the Caribbean-Plate, creating appropriate conditions for magma to be exhibited.
The magma then escalates to the Earth’s surface, where it may erupt to form a volcano. The process is known as subduction, and this is how the volcanic-islands of the Eastern Caribbean were accumulated.