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Ecuadoran Eruption Spews Huge Ash Cloud July 19, 2013
Satellite Image
Pyrocumulus clouds soaring high above the Andes due to an eruption of Ecuador's Tungurahua volcano.
A violent eruption of Ecuador’s Tungurahua volcano sent a large plume of ash, stones and vapor soaring more than 8 miles into the sky above the Andes on Sunday.

The explosion was heard across a wide stretch of the country, including in the southwestern port of Guayaquil.

The ash plume from the 16,480-foot volcano could be seen in the capital of Quito, 80 miles to the north.

Officials said that at least 200 people were evacuated from the zones of Cusua, Chacauco and Juive, near the volcano.

Tungurahua has been intermittently active since it roared back to life in 1999 after remaining dormant for more than 80 years.

An eruption in 2006 left four people dead, two missing and large tracts of farmland destroyed.

Last December, a fiery eruption sent people rushing from their homes and chunks of molten lava shooting high above the summit crater.

Photos: El Comercio