La Palma eruption update 3rd November 2021: The LP-211 access road is threatened by a new lava stream

La Palma eruption – 3rd November 2021

Daily summary

The eruption continues to show a mixed strombolian mechanism, with explosive phases producing pyroclastics deposits and more effusive phases producing lava flows, as well as pulses of phreatomagmatic activity. There are multiple active strombolian vents in the main cone, with a lava emission vent being located on the NW flank of the main cone, with the activity of the latter being variable. Regarding the lava flows, two of the flows towards the south, named flow 3 and flow 9, barely advance, whilst the furthest south flow, number 11, has sped up and advances at 3m per hour. Because the flow is approaching and will likely overcome the LP-211 road, which has been the primary access route to the coast around Puerto Naos where lots of agriculture and the emergency desalination plants are located, the Cabildo have begun constructing a new access route between these areas. Regarding earthquakes, 125 events were recorded, almost all at intermediate depths (10-15 km), although the day’s most powerful earthquake being a 5 mbLg earthquake at 35 km.

SO2 emissions increased and were measured at 29,400 tons per day, although this is underestimated relative to satellite measurements, whilst the ash and gas plume reached 2700 m. Satellite measurements however suggests a downward trend in the SO2 emissions throughout the eruption. Tremor has increased since slightly since the decrease on the 2nd, whilst deformation remains stable in the proximal GPS stations, with slight deflation at distant stations. Air quality improved, with only Puntagorda exceeding the daily SO2 threshold (125 μg/m3), and no exceedance of the hourly alert threshold (500 μg/m3) after 9am local time. PM10 levels remained good-reasonably good everywhere except Los Llanos where extremely unfavourable conditions continued, exceeding the daily threshold (50 μg/m3), although levels decreased towards the end of the day.

A picture of a volcano with rising ash plume coming up from it, with grey forests around it and buildings in the foreground

The eruption on the 3rd taken from the north near the town of El Paso. Image credit: IGN Spain

Sources: Government of the Canary Islands, PEVOLCA, Involcan, IGN, DSN, Cabildo La Palma, 112 Canarias, Tolouse VAAC, Copernicus EMS

Lava flows


Exclusion zone map

Exclusion zones shown here have been approximated from press releases from the Cabildo de La Palma and will not be exact, nor claim to be official maps of the exclusion zones. For official information, please contact the Cabildo de La Palma.

Official social media

To see our full social media archive, visit our open data section or click here.

News articles

  • EuroNews – Confinements and stay indoors because of air quality – here
  • ITV – Flights cancelled and schools shut – here
  • Independent – La Palma ‘Extremely Safe’ says tourism minister – here

To see our full news archive, visit our open data section or click here.

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Eruption footage

News and Interviews

Witness Testimonies

Interactive Lava Flow Map

Notes: Use the button in the top right to open the map into full screen mode. Use the legend icon in the top left to see the legend and further information about the map. Click on individual days to see an outline of the lava flows on that day.

Interactive Earthquake Map

click here to enlarge

Notes: The size of the points represents the size of the earthquake, and the colour represents the depth. The map will also only show a certain number of points at once. For ease of use, we recommend you uncheck all dates and the satellite basemap from the legend in the top right, and inspect the earthquakes one day at a time.

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