The day of the tragedy in Armero – level 2

13-11-1985

Nevado del Ruiz is a volcano in Columbia.

On November 13, 1985, at 9:09 p.m., the volcano erupts. It sends a lot of dust into the atmosphere. The eruption also creates a lot of lava. The lava starts to melt snow on the top of the volcano. Water from the snow starts to mix with earth and small stones. All of these materials make lahars which start to go down river valleys on the volcano’s sides.

They go down at a speed of 50 kilometers per hour. They are destroying everything in their way. One of the lahars is going to the town of Armero.

It’s a quiet night and people of Armero don’t know about the coming danger. Many of them are in their houses.

At 11:30 p.m., the first lahar hits. Then, more lahars come. They are traveling at about six meters per second. They are up to 30 meters deep. The lahars destroy Armero. More than 22,000 people are killed.

Difficult words: atmosphere (the air around a place), erupt (to explode), lava (hot liquid rock), melt (to change from ice to water), lahar (a river of mud which goes down from a volcano), valley (a land between two mountains).

What do you think about this day?

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