24 Sep La Palma eruption update 24th september 2021: Increase in eruption intensity seen
La Palma eruption update 24th september 2021: Increase in eruption intensity seen
An increase in explosive activity throughout the day, to the most energetic levels seen since the eruption began, has prompted the evacuation of a further 160 people to the northwest of the volcano, in Tajuya, Tacande de Abajo and those not already evacuated in Tacande de Arriba. The decision was made because of the increased risk of volcanic materials and pressure waves reaching and causing damage in areas outside of the current exclusion zone. In particular, this related to the opening of two new effusive vents as well as a fracture in the NW flank of the main cone, which could destabilise the cone and increase the risk of a sector collapse. The two new effusive vents emit fluid lava flows, that travel faster than previous flows but flow over the top of previous flows. In total, the number of evacuees has now reached 6,000. Latest estimates of damage indicate up to 400 buildings affected by the lava flows.
With the increase in explosive activity, volcanic tremor and SO2 emissions also increased throughout the day, with the latter estimated at >28,000 tons per day. However, air quality with respect to SO2 concentrations in nearby population centres has remained at a ‘good’ level across the surveillance network. Deformation also remains stable across the network, with no patterns of inflation or deflation seen. Earthquake activity remains at a low level, with only 2 earthquakes recorded, peaking at 2.7 mbLg. However, it is worth noting that since the start of the eruption and commencement of constant volcanic tremor, small magnitude (<2.0) earthquakes cannot be recorded and located due to the noise from the volcanic tremor.
Sources: Government of the Canary Islands, PEVOLCA, Involcan, IGN, DSN, Cabildo La Palma, 112 Canarias, Tolouse VAAC
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