La Palma volcano eruption today: evacuation, possible tsunami and live updates

AS USA

COMMENT
La Palma volcano eruption today: evacuation, possible tsunami and live updates

La Palma volcanic eruption: live coverage

Headlines

- La Palma airport now operational again after clean-up

- Spanish volcanologist explains what will happen when the lava reaches the sea on La Palma. (Details)

-  More than 430 buildings destroyed by lava flow, which now covers over 200 hectares

- Villages of Tacande and Tajuya evacuated amid increased explosive activity and new vents. Ash plume now 4km high

- New lava flow caused by cone fracture moving "more quickly and more fluidly"

- Lava flow "advancing quickly towards the coast", says president of La Palma local government

- Spain PM Sánchez to declare La Palma "catastrophe zone"

- Active volcanoes in the Canary Islands: an overview

- When was the last volcanic eruption in the Canary Islands? (Details)

- The question on many minds: What happens when the lava reaches the ocean? (Details)

Related articles:

Airport in La Palma now closed due to the volcano eruption

The airport at La Palma halted flights for a period of time Sunday to avoid engire failures caused by interactions with volcanic ash.

A single house saved

Recent drone footage taken in La Palma, shows one "miracle house" that was saved from the destruction caused by the flow of lava from the Volcano that erupted a week ago.

Main lava flow “advancing quickly towards the coast”

Mariano H Zapata, the president of the Cabildo de La Palma, the island’s local government, told a press conference this evening that the main lava flow, which “had been practically motionless for two days”, and is “advancing quickly towards the coast”.

Zapata said: “We can’t say for certain whether it will reach the sea or not, but we can confirm that it is heading towards it.”

Related reading: Volcanologist explains to AS what will happen if the lava flow reaches the sea

Involcan images of the lava flow

The Canary Islands Volcanology Institute, Involcan, has published these video images of the lava flow pouring from the Cumbre Vieja volcano today.

Casteñeda image

AS reporter Santiago Castañeda has captured this image of the huge plume of smoke rising into the La Palma sky from the Cumbre Vieja volcano.

First cloudless satellite image of erupting volcano and lava flow

SpaceTec’s Annamaria Luongo has shared this satellite image of the erupting Cumbre Vieja volcano and the lava flow emanating from it. It's the first such picture to be taken without clouds obscuring the view.

Farmer potatoes ash volcano La Palma

Jorge, a farmer from La Palma, harvests sweet potatoes, the only undamaged produce from his ash-covered plot of land, as the smoke of the Cumbre Vieja volcano rises in the sky in Los Llanos de Aridane.

(Photo by DESIREE MARTIN / AFP)

Lava flow brings down Todoque church bell tower

These images broadcast by Radio Televisión Canaria show the moment lava flowing from the Cumbre Vieja volcano brought down the bell tower of the church in Todoque on Sunday. Firefighters unsuccessfully fought to divert the lava, part of a new flow travelling at 100 metres per hour, away from the building.

Mariano H Zapata, the president of La Palma’s local government, expressed his sadness at the bell tower's destruction, but declared: “Although the volcano has taken with it one of [Todoque’s] symbols and hallmarks, we’re going to be stronger than the volcano all together.”

la p

La Palma and El Hierro, the 'youngest' Canary Islands

Both Fuerteventura and Lanzarote (the most Eastern of the Canary Islands) are believed to be the oldest islands with an estimated age of 16/17 million years. La Palma is believed to be 2 million years old with El Hierro the 'youngest' island in the archipelago with an age of 1,1 million years.

Chef José Andrés reports from La Palma

José Ramón Andrés Puerta is a Spanish chef, restaurateur, and founder of World Central Kitchen, a non-profit devoted to providing meals in the wake of natural disasters. He's live in La Palma and filing regular updates via his Twitter account to his 1 million followers.

La Palma

A week since the Cumbre Vieja volcano erupted

In the seven days since the volcano erupted on the Canary Island a week ago, over 6,000 residents have been forced to leave their homes with more than 400 properties seriously damaged by lava.

Ferry operator to increase La Palma-Tenerife connections

On Sunday, ferry operator Fred Olsen Express said it would add an extra round trip between La Palma and Tenerife from Monday until Wednesday.

"Fred Olsen Express will increase connections... to continue meeting the demand for transport generated by the emergency situation caused by the volcanic eruption," it said in a statement.

Some people evacuated from towns close to the volcano were allowed to return to their homes to collect their belongings, authorities said on Saturday night.

Ash covers the streets of Santa Cruz de La Palma

AS reporter Santiago Castañeda takes a walk through the deserted streets of Santa Cruz de La Palma, the island's capital. If you can't understand what he's saying in Spanish, it doesn't matter; just listen to that crunch-crunch sound made by the carpet of ash under his feet:

WORLD NEWS

Spanish volcanologist explains what will happen when the lava reaches the sea on La Palma

Vicente Soler, a volcanologist at the Spanish National Research Council (CSIC), spoke to AS to explain the current situation of the volcano, how the process began and what is expected for the future.

Read the full interview

Ash fall control

The analysts have stations set up in key parts of La Palma in order to collect ash fall from the volcanic eruption and monitor its evolution.

More reconnaissance images

The view of the island is best seen from above the island, and this drone footage gives a perfect example of this.

WORLD NEWS

La Palma volcano: coastal landslide captured on video

The west coast of the island of La Palma, where the volcanic eruption in the area of Cumbre Vieja has been taking place for a week, has seen a rather spectacular landslide that has fallen into the sea.

The event occurred on Sunday morning, on a cliff above Playa Nueva, near the port of the town. It's not yet clear if this is directly related to the seismic activity that has been capturing the world's attention.

Watch it here

Pevolca Sunday update

If you want to listen to the words directly out of the mouth of Miguel Ángel Morcuende, you can check that out here [in Spanish]. Most of what he said can be found in English in the previous posts.

La Palma volcano update (cont...)

"We don't need clothes, blankets, food or toys. We don't have people without shelter.

"What we need is help to the local economy. This starts with contributions of money."

La Palma volcano update (cont...)

"Seismic activity continues at low levels and the depth of the signal is over 10 kilometres.

"Nearly 10,000 personnel are working on emergency coordination efforts.

"The people who were evacuated the day before yesterday [Friday] in Tajuya and Tacande will return to their homes.

"We are not in a situation of total alarm. Safety is completely secure as long as there are no major changes. This is a typical eruption process in the Canary Islands, with the added problem of passing through inhabited areas.

"Life in La Palma is safe."

La Palma volcano update (cont...)

"There are other municipalities that are suffering from ash fall due to a south-westerly wind. In particular, the east side of the island.

"This does not affect the air quality in the habitable areas. The air quality remains good.

"The ash fall does not affect health, but care must be taken in handling the ash because the dust can cause bronchial and eye problems."

La Palma volcano update

Miguel Ángel Morcuende, director of PEVOLCA:

"We are still managing the same variables as in previous days.

"We have a lava flow to the south that is moving at about 30cm per hour. The lava is at about 1,250 degrees Celsius. It is flowing very fast, but it is becoming more viscous and is slowing down."

La Palma eruptions

As we wait for the press conference, here is a reminder of volcanoes of the past on La Palma.

We're about to go live to a press conference of the volcano emergency planning team of the Canary Islands...

1

A small landslide has been witnessed in Tazacorte. For the moment, it is not known if it is a direct result of the volcanic eruptions.

Binter maintains suspension of flights

The Canary airline Binter has advised us through a statement that the situation with the ash cloud coming from the volcanic eruption will continue to keep its flights to and from La Palma suspended.

"The airline has been forced to take this decision due to a force majeure and the flights scheduled for today have been cancelled.

"The paralysation of the operation will be maintained until the conditions improve and allow us to fly while guaranteeing passenger safety."

The company has made it clear that they will deal with refunds or reschedules appropriately.

Endesa customers in La Palma can request bill deferrals

Energy company Endesa has activated a special plan for urgent measures to help those in La Palma given the serious economic and social consequences caused by the volcanic eruption.

The multinational will offer a personalised payments plan on invoices as well as special offers and specific measures for those whose homes or small businesses have been directly affected by the eruption.

Similarly, all Endesa customers on the island may request payment deferrals or installments of bills in order to help mitigate the impact that this natural catastrophe will have on households.

In the same way, the contracts of the homes that have been lost will be terminated and the bills will be canceled from last Sunday.

Cumbre Vieja magmatic system pressure decreasing

The Volcanological Institute of the Canary Islands has reported that the magnetic pressure on La Palma has dropped.

However, they also advise that this "does not imply that the eruption is approaching its end," adding that, "more data and different parameters will be needed to make correct forecasts about the medium-term evolution of the eruptive activity."

That means we'll continue to watch this space very closely and bring you all the latest.

Canary Islands TV takes stance on footage shown

"We will always respect the integrity and feelings of the people affected."

That was the message from the local TV broadcaster, who stated that:

"For this reason we have not recorded images of the evacuated people who are in the football field in El Paso and we have stopped broadcasting and sharing those in which houses are seen collapsing."

LA PALMA ERUPTION

La Palma eruption: drone takes stunning images of lava flow

As the Cumbre Vieja eruption on La Palma intensifies, the Geological and Mining Institute of Spain has been sending up drones to track the lava flow.

Here's some more incredible footage of what has been developing.

La Palma airport is operational again

La Palma airport has returned to normal on Sunday, as announced by Aena.

During the last few days, the work of cleaning the ash from the volcano eruption has been carried out in collaboration with the island's administrations and organizations, and the airport manager has passed on thanks for all their efforts in difficult circumstances.

The island’s government said there had been “no significant incidents” with the volcano since Saturday, when part of the crater collapsed and another river of lava emerged.

They have also been able to communicate that the eight airports across the Canary Islands are now operative, although Aena recommends that passengers should check the status of the flight with the airline before travelling.

The closure had led to long lines at the island’s port to catch ferries off the island.

Drone footage above the lava

Local television has shared this drone footage giving you the current situation above La Palma, a full week now since the eruption began.

Reports are that 496 buildings have already been impacted by the explosions and lava flow.

Pope Francis expresses solidarity with La Palma

The Pontiff said a few words in support of the emergency services working to keep residents of La Palma safe during an Angelus address on Sunday. 

Copernicus captures first clear image of ashfall

The European Union's Copernicus observatory now estimates the scale of the ashfall on La Palma at 1,314 hectares.

Cumbre Vieja eruption could last "24 to 84 days"

The BBC asked an expert from Spain's National Geographic Institute, based on past eruptions in La Palma, how long the Cumbre Vieja eruptions could last. The answer was between 24 and 84 days.

The last eruption on La Palma took place in 1971 when Teneguía, which is part of the same range as Cumbre Vieja, erupted over a period of just over a month. 

Huge queues as people try to leave La Palma by sea

With La Palma’s airport now closed due to the ash clouds caused by the erupting Cumbre Vieja volcano, people attempting to leave have been forced to seek a ferry off the island.

The Canary Islands media outlet El Día reported queues of “hundreds of people” at the Santa Cruz de La Palma ferry terminal on Saturday.

volcano

Airport closed as La Palma volcano eruption intensifies

Volcanic explosions spewed red hot lava high into the air on La Palma on Saturday as a new emission vent opened, forcing the small Spanish island to close its airport and preventing some people leaving.

The Cumbre Vieja volcano, which began erupting last Sunday, is entering a new explosive phase. The Canary Islands Volcanology Institute, Involcan, said the new emission vent that had opened was to the west of the principle vent.

Spanish airport operator Aena said the island's airport had been closed because of the volcano, which has spewed out thousands of tons of lava, destroyed hundreds of houses and forced the evacuation of nearly 6,000 people.

"La Palma airport is inoperative due to ash accumulation. Cleaning tasks have started, but the situation may change at any time," it tweeted.

Nighttime aerial view of lava flow

Channel la Sexta broadcast drone footage of the lava flow Saturday evening. The flow is moving between 200 to 300 meters per hour.

Closeup aerial view of eruption and lava flow

The Geological and Mining Institute of Spain and the Spanish National Research Council provide footage from the eruption on La Palma showing the full extent of what the lava has covered since Sunday.

Scenes from the volcanic eruption on La Palma

Cumbre Vieja began erupting after 3 pm GMT Sunday 26 September. Lava has now covered  an area over three fifths the size of Central Park.

la palma

'Please just let it stop'

The volcanic eruption on La Palma besides destroying homes is damaging the island's banana crop, one of the main sources of income. In this photo from Reuters by Nacho Doce, farmer Antonio Brito Alvarez, 65, holds ash in his hands that has affected his banana field at Los Llanos de Aridane.

Shock wave from volcanic eruption caught on video

A reporter from El Salvador in the area managed to capture one of the volcano's huge shock waves.

Graphic of La Palma seismic activity in run-up to eruption

The Canary Islands Volcanology Institute closely tracks the activity of the various active volcanos on the islands. Two weeks ago seismic activity  began to greatly increase informing of an imminent eruption.

La Palma volcano eruption: welcome

Hell and welcome to AS English's live coverage of the ongoing volcanic eruption on the Canary Island of La Palma.

The Cumbre Vieja volcano has been spewing ash and lava since erupting on September 19, destroying hundreds of buildings and forcing the evacuation of thousands of people.

.