April 2014 – PERU – The authorities in Peru say they are evacuating people living near the Ubinas volcano, in the south of the country, because of increased activity. Officials said it would take three days to move 4,000 residents and their livestock to safer grounds. Ubinas, Peru’s most active volcano, recently began spewing ash clouds up to 4km (two miles) high. An eruption of cinder and toxic gases in 2006 killed livestock and forced a similar evacuation. Last week, the Peruvian government declared a state of emergency in the provinces closest to the volcano to help those most-affected. Agriculture Minister Juan Benites said the residents and their 30,000 animals, including llamas and alpacas, would be moved to an area 20km (12 miles) away. The 5,672-metre (18,609-foot) volcano is located about 100 kilometers (60 miles) east of Arequipa, Peru’s second-most populous city. –BBC
Mt. Everest avalanche kills 12: Regardless of the final toll, it’s the single deadliest day ever on Everest — surpassing the eight deaths in May 1996 when a storm struck. That tragedy was the basis for the best-selling book Into Thin Air. According to Reuters, the avalanche “hit the most popular route to the mountain’s peak … between base camp and camp 1.” CNN says the site of the disaster is about 20,000 feet above sea level. Everest’s peak is an estimated 29,035 feet above sea level. This is the climbing season on Everest, which more than 4,000 people have successfully climbed. About 250 have died on the mountain that borders Nepal and Tibet, Reuters notes. The Sherpas who were killed Friday and some climbers had in recent days been setting ropes, preparing camps and acclimating to the altitude, CNN reports.
While dangerous, Everest is not the world’s “deadliest” mountain, according to various analyses. As The Daily Beast has noted, Nepal’s Annapurna has a “death rate” of nearly 38 percent — or, as The Telegraph has put it, Annapurna has “the highest fatality-to-summit ratio of any mountain over 8,000 meters [26,247 feet].” While about 160 people have reached the top of Annapurna and returned, at least 60 have died trying. Everest’s death rate stands at about 6 percent. –NPR