Ash spews from Guatemala's Santa Maria volcano

There has been increased activity in Guatemala's Santa Maria volcano which lies 200kms (124 miles) west of the country's capital.

Residents of nearby communities woke on Wednesday morning to find a thin layer of ash coating their cars, streets and homes.

Guatemala's Institute of Seismology, Volcanology, Meteorology and Hydrology said white columns of smoke reaching up to 5km (3.1 miles) into the sky had spewed forth from the Santiaguito lava-dome complex at the base of the volcano's summit - but the situation was not serious enough to issue an official evacuation notice.

Alejandra Martins reports.