Erupting Spanish island volcano blows open new fissure

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LOS LLANOS DE ARIDANE, Canary Islands — An erupting volcano on a Spanish island off northwest Africa blew open two extra fissures on its cone Friday that belched forth lava, with authorities reporting “intense” exercise within the space.

The new fissures, about 50 ft aside, despatched streaks of fiery crimson and orange molten rock down towards the ocean, parallel to an earlier movement that reached the Atlantic Ocean earlier this week.

The volcano was “much more aggressive,” nearly two weeks after it erupted on the island of La Palma, mentioned Miguel Ángel Morcuende, technical director of the Canary Islands’ emergency volcano response division.

Overnight, scientists recorded eight new earthquakes as much as magnitude 3.5.

The eruption was sending fuel and ash as much as 6,000 meters (nearly 20,000 ft) into the air, officers mentioned.

The immediate evacuation of greater than 6,000 folks for the reason that Sept. 19 eruption helped stop casualties.

A brand new space of solidified lava the place the molten rock is flowing into the ocean extends over greater than 20 hectares (50 acres).

Officials have been monitoring air high quality alongside the shoreline. Sulfur dioxide ranges within the space rose however didn’t symbolize a well being risk, La Palma’s authorities mentioned.

However, it suggested native residents to remain indoors. It additionally really useful that folks on the island put on face masks and eye safety towards heavy falls of volcanic ash.

The volcano has to date emitted some 80 million cubic meters of molten rock, scientists estimate — greater than double the quantity within the island’s final eruption, in 1971.

The lava has to date destroyed or partially destroyed greater than 1,000 buildings, together with properties and farming infrastructure, and entombed round 709 hectares (1,750 acres).

La Palma, house to about 85,000 individuals who stay largely from fruit farming and tourism, is a part of the volcanic Canary Islands, an archipelago off northwest Africa that’s a part of Spain’s territory.

The island is roughly 35 kilometers (22 miles) lengthy and 20 kilometers (12 miles) broad at its broadest level. Life has continued as normal on many of the island whereas the volcano is energetic.