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Kick ’em Jenny Volcano Threatens To Erupt in Grenada

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ST. GEORGE’S — An underwater volcano off the Caribbean coast is on the verge of erupting – posing a risk to all passing ships.

Named Kick ’em Jenny, the volcano – which sits 180m below sea level off the northern coast of Grenada – has produced no less than 200 small earthquakes since it began stirring on July 11.

However, experts at the University of the West Indies’ Seismic Research Centre have raised its threat level to orange, predicting that it could erupt at any moment.

If it were to, then both passing ships and nearby islands will be in danger of being hit by a tsunami.

Scientists say the risk is relatively low, but both shipping and marine vessels in the region have been urged to take heed, with recreational ships ordered to stay at least 3 miles from the summit.

Submarine volcanoes are known to release intense amounts of gas when they erupt, and in between such release gas bubbles in a process known as degassing.

These bubbles lower water density, thus causing ships to lose buoyancy and sink.

Any eruption could also see Kick ’em Jenny spout hot rocks out of the water and as much as three miles into the air.

They then pose a significant risk to ships caught in the vicinity.

In 1944, degassing from Kick ’em Jenny caused a passenger vessel to sink, killing 60 people.

Its last eruption was in 14 years ago, in 2001.

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The Author

John McCarthy

John McCarthy

John McCarthy is primarily known for his investigative reporting on the U.S. Virgin Islands. A series of reports beginning in the 1990's revealed that there was everything from coliform bacteria to Cryptosporidium in locally-bottled St. Croix drinking water, according to a then-unpublished University of the Virgin Islands sampling. Another report, following Hurricane Hugo in 1989, cited a Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) confidential overview that said that over 40 percent of the U.S. Virgin Islands public lives below the poverty line. The Virgin Islands Free Press is the only Caribbean news source to regularly incorporate the findings of U.S. Freedom of Information Act requests. John's articles have appeared in the BVI Beacon, St. Croix Avis, San Juan Star and Virgin Islands Daily News. He is the former news director of WSVI-TV Channel 8 on St. Croix.

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