Frequent ash fallout from long-lived eruptions (with active phases greater than 5 years) may lead to local populations experiencing unacceptably high cumulative exposures to respirable particulate matter. Ash from Montserrat has been shown to contain significant levels of cristobalite and other reactive agents that are associated with an increased risk of developing pneumoconiosis (including silicosis) and other long-term health problems. In this paper it is presented a method for calculating the long-term cumulative exposure to cristobalite from volcanic ash by Monte Carlo simulation. Code has been written to generate synthetic time series for volcanic activity, rainfall, ash deposition and erosion to give daily ash deposit values and cristobalite fraction at a range of locations.
T. K. Hincks, W. P. Aspinall, P. J. Baxter, A. Searl, R. S. J. Sparks and G.Woo.