Last updateMon, 13 Jul 2015 11am
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Volcano of Fire rumbles, more than 200 evacuated

The Colima Volcano began to spew ash and lava late last week, triggering the start of intense activity that experts say has not been seen in 100 years.

Since Saturday, Colima and Jalisco authorities have coordinated the evacuation of around 200 residents from small villages and communities that nestle around the volcano.  Meanwhile, Civil Protection and police officers have set up 12-kilometer exclusion zone around the volcano.

Technically, say scientists, the volcano has not erupted but is in the process of creating a new lava dome, characterized by frequent explosions, glowing avalanches and pyroclastic flows. Spectacular nighttime images and videos show fiery red lava cascading down the sides of the volcano.

The volcano, which is also known as the Volcano of Fire, lies on the border of the states of Jalisco and Colima, 75 miles southwest of Guadalajara.

Reports say around two centimeters of ash have covered the village of Yerbabuena, the first community to be evacuated on Saturday.

Shelters for evacuees have been set up in both Jalisco and Colima.

While many residents voluntarily left their homes, a handful have refused to budge, including nine in the community of Juan Barragan, located five kilometers from the volcano's crater, Spanish-language daily Mural reported Monday.

The Colima state government has also grounded flights at the city's small commercial airport.

Authorities have been distributing face masks in outlying towns and communities that have not been evacuated.