What to do in case of ash fall?

There are more than 20 ?active volcanoes in Ecuador. When a volcano erupts, it usually expels ash that reaches several provinces of the country, where measures must be taken to prevent it from causing damage to the health of people, animals, houses, and other structures. Learn how to proceed in case of ash fall:

  • Don’t leave your house ?unless it’s strictly necessary.
  • Keep doors ?and windows closed, cover their edges with rags, blankets and adhesive tape to prevent ash from coming in.
  • If you have to go out, protect your eyes with goggles ?️, nose and mouth with a damp cloth or mask ?and wear clothing ??that covers most of the body to avoid skin from being harmed.
  • ⛔ Do not use hoses to clean the ash. When mixed with plenty of water, ash forms a heavy paste like cement, this mixture is difficult to remove and can cause the roofs of houses to collapse. You can use water to slightly moisten and prevent it from getting up, making cleaning easier.
  • ? Sweep the ash using a broom, if it is very thick you can use a shovel. Pick it up in resistant bags or sacks. Don’t throw the ash out on the street. In urban areas, be aware of ash collection schedules.
  • ? Cover your food and water, to avoid ash contamination.
  • ? Wash food well before eating it, consuming food with ash can make you sick.
  • ✅ Cover ?water tanks and cisterns to prevent them from coming into contact with ash.
  • Farm animals ?and pets ??are also affected by ash. Keep them indoors or move them to areas where no ash has fallen. Cattle should eat grass free from ash since, otherwise, it damages their teeth and stomach. You can use other food sources such as dry feed, green bananas, among others.
  • Get ready for a possible eruption. Prepare your ?emergency backpack. It must contain: Face masks, first aid kit, medicine, battery radio, flashlight, blankets, warm clothing, cash.
  • ✅ Store emergency food and water for at least 3 days (4 liters per person per day).