Ash, lapilli, and pumice begin to rain down on Pompeii with the ash cloud.
First eruption phase begins
August 24, 79 AD 9:00 AM - August 24, 0079 10:00am
Mt. Vesuvius had been the epicenter of earthquakes for many years before the eruption. The people of Pompeii had grown accustomed to the earthquakes and were not aware that these were signs of the eruption. A small explosion and thin ash cloud begin the eruption.
Eruption Stage begins
August 24, 79 AD 1:00 PM - August 24, 0079 01:30pm
Violent eruption and massive ash cloud emirge from Vesuvius.
Buildings begin to collapse
August 24, 79 AD 5:30 PM - August 25, 0079 01:00am
The volcanic debris builds up in roofs and causes buildings to collapse.
Eruption cloud reaches 20 miles in height.
August 25, 79 AD 12:00 AM - August 25, 0079 01:00am
The cloud emptying debris from the volcano reached 20 miles into the sky.
Second Eruption stage begins
August 25, 79 AD 1:00 - August 25, 0079 02:00am
The eruption cloud begins to collapse. Pyroclastic surges 1 and 2 cover cities surrounding the mountain.
Pumice fall decreases
August 25, 79 AD 2:00 AM - August 25, 0079 06:30am
The amount of pumice and debris falling from the ashes decreases.
Surge 3 reaches Pompeii
August 25, 79 AD 6:30 AM - August 25, 0079 07:30am
The 3rd pyroclastic surge hits Pompeii. Many civilians were killed in this surge.
Surge 4 and 5
August 25, 79 AD 7:30 AM - August 25, 0079 07:45am
The 4th and 5th pyroclastic surges cover Pompeii and surrounding cities
August 25, 79 AD 8:00 AM
Surge 6 dumps another 2 feet of debris and ash into Pompeii.