Mount Cumbre Vieja erupts in El Paso, spewing out columns of smoke, ash and lava as seen from Los Llanos de Aridane on the Canary island of La Palma.
he Cumbre Vieja volcano erupted on Spain's Canary Islands today spewing out lava, ash and a huge column of smoke after days of increased seismic activity, sparking evacuations of people living nearby, authorities said.
Last eruption in 1971
The Canary Islands Volcanology Institute reported the initial eruption shortly after 3pm near the southern end of the island, which saw its last eruption in 1971.
La Palma, with a population of 85,000, is one of the eight volcanic islands in Spain’s Canary Islands archipelago off Africa’s western coast. As per authorities, thousands have been evacuated.
Earthquake recorded before eruption
A 4.2-magnitude earthquake was recorded before the eruption, which took place in an area known as Cabeza de Vaca.
According to local officials, the lava eventually destroyed at least eight houses which led to at least one chalet with a tower to crumble. Authorities have warned that the lava flows could also threaten the municipalities of El Paraiso, Alcala and surrounding areas.
Sánchez to visit Canary islands
Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez has postponed his departure to New York for the UN General Assembly in order to travel to La Palma because of the volcanic eruption.
"I am at the moment heading to the Canary Islands because of the seismic evolution, to see first-hand the situation in La Palma, the coordination of the means and the protocols that have been activated," Sánchez tweeted.
A fresh volcanic eruption in Spain's Canary Islands prompted the cancellation of flights, airport authorities said today, the first planes to be grounded after the Cumbre Vieja volcano came to life this week.
The Cumbre Vieja volcano spews lava, ash and smoke as seen from Los Llanos de Aridane on the Canary island of La Palma in September 25, 2021.