Saturday, February 18, 2006

Limnic Eruption At Lake Nyos Cameroon

Imagine walking into a village where every living creature is dead, no fires burn, cars and trucks are stalled in the middle of the road their drivers dead at the wheel. The ground is littered with dead birds and insects but no visible damage is seen to any creature or structure. What the hell happened?
This is exactly what happened August 12, 1986 near Lake Nyos Cameroon when co2 burst from the lake and swept down the valley killing over 1700 people and innumerable wild and domestic animals, some nearly 17 miles from the lake. Scientist think they understand the process by which this happened, but there is still some debate.
A survivior tells his tale:
"I could not speak. I became unconscious. I could not open my mouth because then I smelled something terrible . . . I heard my daughter snoring in a terrible way, very abnormal . . . When crossing to my daughter's bed . . . I collapsed and fell. I was there till nine o'clock in the (Friday) morning . . . until a friend of mine came and knocked at my door . . . I was surprised to see that my trousers were red, had some stains like honey. I saw some . . . starchy mess on my body. My arms had some wounds . . . I didn't really know how I got these wounds . . .I opened the door . . . I wanted to speak, my breath would not come out . . . My daughter was already dead . . . I went into my daughter's bed, thinking that she was still sleeping. I slept till it was 4:30 p.m. in the afternoon . . . on Friday. (Then) I managed to go over to my neighbors' houses. They were all dead . . . I decided to leave . . . . (because) most of my family was in Wum . . . I got my motorcycle . . . A friend whose father had died left with me (for) Wum . . . As I rode . . . through Nyos I didn't see any sign of any living thing . . . (When I got to Wum), I was unable to walk, even to talk . . . my body was completely weak." Joseph Nkwain from Subum

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

check out for an "neutron bomb" theory which is widespread in Cameroon