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Ambaeans in Vanuatu return home to contaminated water

27 October 2017

Posted in: Pacific Radio News,

By Ruci Farrell -

Mount Yasur in Vanuatu. Photo/ Wikipedia: Rolf Cosar.

Most of the 11,000 Ambaeans in Vanuatu, forced to move to nearby islands three weeks ago due to heightened volcanic activity from Lake Manaro, have returned home to face another major crisis.

Meteorological officer David Tari says most of the water sources on Ambae have been contaminated from the spray of volcanic ash and toxic gases.

"The ash has contaminated most of the water sources: tanks, underground wells and waters from streams," he says. "The advice has been given to them to boil water before cooking or drinking."

Authorities downgraded volcanic activity at Lake Manaro to level three and declared it safe for Ambaeans to return home.

Residents of Ambae Island evacuating last month. Photo/ Twitter: Dan McGarry.

Tags: Vanuatu,