Llaima is one of Chile’s most active volcanoes and has frequent but moderate eruptions. Llaima’s activity has been documented since the 17th century, and consists of several separate episodes of moderate explosive eruptions with occasional lava flows. The last major eruption occurred in 1994.
An eruption on January 1, 2008 forced the evacuation of hundreds of people from nearby villages. A column of smoke approximately 3000 m high was observed. An amateur caught the early eruption phase on video. The volcanic ash expelled by Llaima travelled east over the Andes into Argentina. Ash fall was recorded in the area of Zapala, Neuquén Province, and forced the cancellation of flights to and from Presidente Perón Airport near the city of Neuquén. On July 2, 2008, another eruption resulted in evacuation of 40 people from a 15 km exclusion zone.