La Palma eruption update 11th october 2021: Smoke from burning buildings forces confinements
A confinement of several population centres in Los Llanos de Aridane and El Paso totalling 3,500 people was ordered in the morning, due to the release of toxic gases from a large fire in a cement factory in the Callejón de la Gata industrial park, ignited by the northern active lava flow. There are currently three active lava streams: the original one feeding the lava delta, one to the south of the lava delta on the delta from the 1949 eruption, and the stream to the north which consists of two branches. The stream to the north currently has the greatest supply of lava, and has one branch affecting the industrial park, whilst the other branch is covering new ground in the direction of Todoque Mountain. To the north of Todoque mountain, the original stream is 300 m away from the coast and could form a second lava delta in the coming days if the supply of lava continues.
The thermal inversion was lower than usual, and the wind direction meant ashfall started to affect the eastern side of the island, including the airport. However, SO2 and PM10 concentrations remained within largely acceptable levels. There was a large SO2 peak of 830 μg/m3 at 8:00 am local time at the El Paso station exceeding the hourly threshold, but all other stations remained below the threshold throughout the day. PM10 concentrations were elevated in Los Llanos between 9:00-12:00am, although values remained low elsewhere. For other eruption parameters, deformation remains stable, with no significant trends being seen in the stations close to the eruption site. Earthquake activity again remains elevated and concentrated at 10-15 km depth, although there have been more deep (20-40 km) earthquakes reported in the last couple of days. 77 events were recorded, peaking at 3.6 mbLg. The ash and gas plume reached 4000 m, and the SO2 emissions from the volcano were measured higher than previous days at 21,868 tons per day, although this is an underestimate.
Sources: Government of the Canary Islands, PEVOLCA, Involcan, IGN, DSN, Cabildo La Palma, 112 Canarias, Tolouse VAAC, Copernicus EMS
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