MEXICO CITY, March 31 (UPI) -- Mexico said Wednesday that activity at its Popocatépetl volcano is continuing to increase, and that at one point it spewed a column of ash two miles high.
Popocatépetl is in central Mexico, 43 miles southeast of Mexico City. It had two volcanic tectonic activity events on Wednesday, four low-intensity eruptions, 30 minutes of tremors and 179 volcanic plumes. The tallest plume was two miles high The second was over a mile high.
Prior to Wednesday, the volcano had no volcanic tectonic activity in a week. On Tuesday, there were just 43 volcanic plumes and no tremors.
Officials have warned nearby residents to avoid the area, adding that low-level to intermediate-level explosive activity is expected. Falling ash may affect nearby towns.
Mexico's National Center for Disaster Prevention raised the environmental alert level to the second degree out of three, meaning nearby residents should be prepared to evacuate.