VIDEO: Volcano in Mexico erupt with dramatic force

MEXICO STATE, Mexico (NBC) – Mexico’s Popocatepetl erupted early Thursday in a dramatic show of force.

The eruption shot ash, water, vapor and gas into the air and lava down the sides of the volcano.

The ash and smoke plume rose over a mile into the sky.

Popocatepetl has been active since the mid-1990s, but recent eruptions have been stronger than in the past.

Authorities have put some towns near the volcano on stand-by for evacuation.

There are more than 3,000 volcanoes in Mexico. Fourteen of those are active.

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