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Volcanic eruption on La Palma: Lava is steadily approaching the sea - experts warn

2021-09-23T09:19:44.242Z

The lava flows are moving inexorably towards the sea. On the way, the lava destroys everything that stands in its way. More earthquakes shook La Palma after the volcanic eruption.



The lava flows are moving inexorably towards the sea.

On the way, the lava destroys everything that stands in its way.

More earthquakes shook La Palma after the volcanic eruption.

Es Paso / Madrid - The volcanic eruption on La Palma is fascinating and terrifying.

On the night of Tuesday, the Canary Island shook again.

An earthquake with a magnitude of 4 on the Richter scale woke the population from their sleep.

Experts closely monitor the activity of the Cumbre Vieja volcano.

Scientists had feared a volcanic eruption weeks ago.

So-called swarm quakes heralded an eruption.

On Sunday afternoon the time had come: The volcano Cumbre Vieja spat ash and glowing lava kilometers into the sky.

Thousands of people were previously evacuated.

Tourists were also among them.

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Volcanic eruption on La Palma: The lava rolls over houses and a swimming pool.

© Europa Press / dpa

Volcanic eruption on La Palma - 166 houses completely destroyed

Since then, lava flows have mercilessly rolled downhill through the country.

The front is on average six meters high.

The EU Sentinel 1 satellite has sent images from space showing the extent of the force of nature.

The volcano's lava now covers 103 hectares of land.

166 houses have been completely destroyed.

But there could be a lot more.

Authorities fear that 1,000 houses will be lost.

🔴Breaking # EMSR546 # ErupciónLaPalma



Night shift for our #RapidMappingTeam



They released at 04:14 UTC a grading map for the #LaPalma eruption using # Sentinel1🇪🇺🛰️ & COSMO-SkyMed radar images



Their mapping product shows



166 buildings destroyed 🏘️


Lava flow covers 103 ha 🌋 pic.twitter.com/5gHJLQqCZV

- Copernicus EMS (@CopernicusEMS) September 21, 2021

During the night a new estuary broke open 900 meters from the main crater.

A scenario that the researchers have already foreseen.

Magma seeks a way on the way to the surface.

However, the scientists do not rule out the possibility of further cracks.

But when does the lava reach the sea?

And if by which way?

The flow of the lava has slowed down in the meantime.

Volcanic eruption on La Palma - lava approaches the sea

It is a question that worries experts. Because the moment the lava flows into the sea, there is a dangerous reaction. If the lava tongue hits with a temperature of around a thousand degrees and the salty sea water (around 20 degrees) there is an explosion of water vapor. The extreme heat of the lava causes a dense white cloud, but also a chemical reaction. It is a mixture of condensed acidic vapor, which can contain hydrochloric acid gases and tiny volcanic crystals, can be read on the United States Geological Survey website under the heading "Lava entering Ocean". It is a warning to unsuspecting people who want to see this spectacle up close.

In addition to the poisonous cloud, the coasts can suddenly collapse and cliffs collapse. The volcanic eruption attracts onlookers. The authorities appeal to the population to avoid the affected areas. As early as Monday, the traffic on the main roads and access roads had temporarily collapsed, reports local media. Civil defense is stepping up security measures to prevent people from entering the volcanic area.

The Canaries, which also include the popular holiday islands of Gran Canaria, Tenerife and Lanzarote, are of volcanic origin.

The last eruption of the Cumbre Vieja occurred in 1971.

In the 20th century, it had only erupted twice: in 1971 and previously in 1949. The last time there was a volcanic eruption in the region in 2011 on the seabed off the island of El Hierro.

(ml) * Merkur.de is an offer from IPPEN.MEDIA

List of rubric lists: © Europa Press / dpa

Source: merkur

All news articles on 2021-09-23

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