Tally of missing from Guatemala ‘Fire’ volcano explosion hits 332

A general view shows an area affected by the eruption. (Reuters pic)

GUATEMALA CITY: One month after Guatemala’s Fuego volcano violently erupted, killing more than 100 people, the country’s disaster agency has raised the number of missing by more than two thirds to 332 people.

Authorities scoured records from hospitals, shelters, schools and an online registry as well as Guatemala’s utility company and health ministry to update the tally, disaster agency CONRED said in a statement on Wednesday.

It previously said 197 people had gone missing since the eruptions of dust, ash and super-heated gas known as pyroclastic flows that began on June 3 at the Fuego volcano, its strongest activity in four decades.

At least 113 people died, CONRED said on Wednesday, and some in the hardest-hit areas lost nearly all their family members.

The 3,763-meter (12,346-feet) peak, whose name means fire in Spanish, is one of several active volcanoes among the 34 located in Guatemala.

The volcano sits about 25 miles (40 km) southwest of the capital, Guatemala City, near the picturesque colonial town of Antigua, a UNESCO world heritage site.