Death toll rises to 99 in Guatemala volcanic eruption; almost 200 people still missing

GUATEMALA CITY – The death toll from Sunday’s violent volcanic eruption in Guatemala rose to 99, the country’s forensic agency said on Wednesday.

Guatemala’s National Institute of Forensic Sciences said bodies of 99 people have been found so far and that 192 people were still missing following the eruption of Guatemala’s Fuego volcano.

The previous figure was 75 late Tuesday.

Guatemala’s Fuego volcano erupts, killing dozens

The institute also said new explosions were hindering rescue efforts and that the possibility of finding survivors was very low.

Many victims are believed to have burned to death or suffocated from the poisonous gases released in the eruption on Sunday.

An estimated 1.7 million people had been affected by the eruption.

Guatemalan authorities warned that the Fuego volcano was showing signs of greater activity on Tuesday night.

The seismological, volcanic and meteorological institute Insivumeh heightened its warnings after the volcano erupted again earlier on Tuesday, forcing evacuations and sending rescue workers scrambling for cover.

The peak had its most devastating eruption in more than four decades on Sunday, showering ash on a wide area and sending lava flows through nearby towns.