Lake Nyos dangerous
1988/04/01 Elhuyar Zientzia Iturria: Elhuyar aldizkaria
Two years ago, in summer, from Lake Nyos, in Cameroon, came a sad news, because 1700 people were drowned by a cloud of gas that had shot down. If the American geologist John Lockwood is right, Lake Nyos can once again be the source of bad news. The 50 million m 3 of water that accumulate in the lake can be poured above the natural dam that sustains it, causing a disaster in the lower popular valley.
The lake is formed about 400 years ago, when a species of prey with accumulation of volcanic ash was formed. Then the dam was 200 meters high, but the water has been eroded and currently only has 48 m. In addition, each year it advances 1.8 meters. According to scientists, if the dam was broken, a water wall of about 20 m would travel 30 km downstream in two hours. The disaster would be terrible!