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The Armero Tragedy

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Summer A

on 17 June 2014

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Transcript of The Armero Tragedy

What Happened?
Survivors with wounds and burns from the eruption
The Armero Tragedy did not lead to any benefits as other nations had to donate and raise money in order to support rescue missions and other forms of aid.
The Event &
Regional Impacts

Health Impacts
Socio-economic Impacts
The Armero Tragedy
1985 Nevado del Ruiz Eruption
What is a volcano?
A volcano is an opening within Earth’s crust from which molten rock and gases can escape. This also includes the land form surrounding it.
What is a composite volcano?
A composite volcano is one which is formed from successive layers of material from violent and less violent eruptions (including lava flows and pyroclastic material).
Eruptions are triggered by earthquakes.
Melting of high elevation snow near its peak can trigger massive mudflows called lahars.
On November 13th, 1985, the volcano Nevado del Ruiz in northern Colombia erupted.
Four towns were affected by the ash spewed out of the volcano which caused a mud slide, but the most affected was Armero, which lied in the valley below the volcano.
The eruption took place at night while most of the town was asleep.

Nevado del Ruiz
prior to the massive eruption.
A serious eruption occurred which caused the ice cap at the volcano’s summit to melt. This resulted in mud and debris coming down the mountain at speeds of 50 km/h (lahars).
The lahars covered the city of Armero.
Regional Impacts
Loss of Life
23,000 people were killed, with the majority of them being residents of Armero.
Economic Loss & Infrastructure Damage
The entire town of Armero was covered by the lahar.
4500 people were injured
8000 people were made homeless
15,000 animals were killed
Take volcanic activity more seriously even if there is no eruption.
Do not build/occupy land which was previously subject to lahars.
Most victims of the disaster died of suffocation, as lahars were approximately 8 metres deep. Others have died from being crushed and buried by wreckages, acid burns, and infected wounds.
Since lahars are known to carry water, bacteria and diseases like malaria can spread, which have the potential to cause other serious health complications if left untreated.
Short Term Consequences
Long Term Consequences
Some children and adults developed mental disorders like chronic depression and PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder) as a result of the experience of severe traumatic events.
Survivors of the Armero disaster were subjected to population displacement
Clean water is now non-existent after the disaster as all rivers became solid due to pyroclastic material from the lahars solidifying in place.
All farmland, roads, houses, hospitals, and other properties were destroyed by the mudslides (50 schools, 2 hospitals, 58 factories and processing plants, and 343 commercial properties).
The estimated damage costs of the disaster were $7 billion, which was almost one fifth of Colombia’s GDP in 1985.
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