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Sounds resembling a cauldron with boiling water were heard from deep underground.The strong smell of sulfur was all over the city, 6.4 km (4.0 mi) away from the volcano, causing discomfort to people and horses.Remains of the Paléo-Pelée cone are still visible at the northern view at the volcano today.A second stage, now called the intermediate phase, started around 100,000 years ago, after a long period of quiescence.The main eruption, on , left only two survivors in the direct path of the flow: Louis-Auguste Cyparis survived because he was in a poorly ventilated, dungeon-like jail cell; Léon Compère-Léandre, living on the edge of the city, escaped with severe burns.Havivra Da Ifrile, a young girl, reportedly escaped with injuries during the eruption by taking a small boat to a cave down shore, and was later found adrift 3 km (1.9 mi) from the island, unconscious.The subduction formed the Lesser Antilles island arc, a curved chain of volcanoes approximately 850 kilometres (530 mi) in length, between Puerto Rico and Venezuela, where the Caribbean Plate meets Atlantic oceanic crust belonging to the South American Plate.

More than 30 eruptions have been identified during the last 5,000 years of the volcano's activity.This eruption formed many pyroclastic flows and produced a dome which filled the caldera.The following eruption in 1929 formed a second dome in the Étang Sec caldera, and produced pyroclastic flows emptying into the Blanche River valley.This last eruption is mainly responsible for the current state of Mount Pelée.

Relatively minor phreatic (steam) eruptions that occurred in 17 were evidence that the volcano was active and potentially dangerous.

This stage is grouped by the formation of the Morne Macouba lava dome, then later on, the Morne Macouba caldera.