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El Popo sends a vapor plume drifting across the skyline. El Popo sends a vapor plume drifting across the skyline.

Volcano evacuation routes prepared with the help of drones

42 routes have been identified for residents living near El Popo

Images taken with drones have helped prepare 42 evacuation routes for communities surrounding the Popocatépetl volcano.

The National Center for Disaster Prevention (Cenapred) together with state and national Civil Protection personnel prepared evacuation plans for a digital platform on which residents can identify the closest escape route.

The videos of the escape routes will be shareable on social media.

Civil Protection emergencies subdirector Salvador Cervantes stressed that it was important for the public to know exactly where the escape routes begin and how to arrive safely at the temporary shelters.

State Civil Protection authorities explained that they hope to create a culture of disaster prevention in which residents will know how to reach out to authorities and take responsibility for the preventative measures that can be carried out beforehand.

Authorities said they are working to improve conditions on the escape routes, which in some cases include treacherously narrow stretches of road and bridges in need of repair. However, the state government emphasized that all routes are currently navigable in case of a major eruption.

The volcano’s alert warning was upgraded two weeks to yellow Phase 3. The next highest level is in the red zone and warns area residents to be prepared to evacuate.

Source: El Financiero (sp), Excélsior (sp)

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