GLACIER BREAKS IN PERU, CAUSING TSUNAMI IN ANDES
A huge glacier broke off and plunged into a lake in Peru, causing a 23-metre tsunami wave that swept away at least three people and destroyed a water processing plant serving 60,000 local residents, government officials said on Monday.
The ice block tumbled into a lake in the Andes on Sunday near the town of Carhuaz, some 320 km north of the capital, Lima. Three people were feared buried in debris, Reuters reports.
Investigators said the chunk of ice from the Hualcan glacier measured 500 metres by 200 metres.
'This slide into the lake generated a tsunami wave, which breached the lake's levees, which are 23 metres high - meaning the wave was 23 metres high,' said Patricio Vaderrama, an expert on glaciers at Peru's Institute of Mine Engineers.
Authorities evacuated mountain valleys, fearing more breakages.
It was one of the most concrete signs yet that glaciers are disappearing in Peru, home to 70 percent of the world's tropical icefields.