the essential Placed under close surveillance for a week, the Cumbre Vieja volcano, located in the Canaries, Spain, erupted for the first time since 50 years. Local authorities announced Monday that several residences were burnt by the lava.
According to an AFP correspondent on site, large columns of smoke, ash and lava flows were escaping from several points of the Cumbre Vieja volcano which had been placed under close surveillance for a week due to an intense seismic activity.
The impressive images showed jets of lava rising to several tens of meters high.
“The eruption started in the Cabeza de Vaca area, in El Paso” a little later 14 h local (14 H 00 GMT), indicated on its Twitter account the local government of the island (cabildo), where the maximum alert level was established.
Dwellings affected by lava
No human life had been affected on Sunday evening and, for the moment, “all the evacuations have been made, or some 5. 00 people “in the villages closest to the volcano, assured the president of the Canary Islands region, Angel Victor Torres, at a press conference.
Several homes were hit by the lava while several roads were cut.
The president of the region underlined the “luck” that this eruption took place “in a depopulated area” of La Palma.
This island, one of the seven in the archipelago located off northwestern Africa, has nearly 50.000 residents.
According to projections by the government of La Palma, the lava flows descending from the volcano, located in the center-west of the island, should head towards the sea in the southwest of the island, passing through areas inhabited now evacuated and wooded, which raises fears of fires.
These lava flows were advancing at an average speed of 700 meters per hour at nearly 1. 000 ° C, according to the Canary Islands Volcanological Institute.
“The eruption will continue but everything suggests that there will be no new eruption points,” said Angel Victor Torres.