Meteorologists in Spain have warned that fallout from a volcanic eruption ln the Caribbean island of San Vicente last week is heading for the Canary Islands and could even reach the peninsula.

The toxic cloud is heading east from the Caribbean and is expected to reach the islands by late Monday and hitting the south of the Iberian peninsula by Wednesday.

The clouds carry sulphur dioxide and cause acid rain, which although not toxic if it comes in contact with human skin can cause respiratory problems.

“This cloud brings with it a large number of gasses along its path and one of them is sulphur dioxide”, explained Víctor Quintero, director of the Spanish Meteorological Agency based in Santa Cruz de Tenerife, how he said it was likely to pass straight over the islands without causing precipitation.

“We are keeping an eye on it,” he said.

The ash cloud which is currently travelling at between 3,000 and 5,000 metres above sea level is the result of an eruption of the Soufrière volcano on the eastern Caribbean island of St Vincent last week.

Approximately 16,000 people who live in communities close to the volcano had been evacuated under government orders on Thursday.

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