VIDEO. Spain: the Cumbre Vieja volcano erupted in the Canaries after 50 years of inactivity

the essential The Cumbre Vieja volcano had been under close surveillance for a week after the recording by the Canary Islands Volcanological Institute of several thousand low magnitude earthquakes, up to nearly 4 on the Richter scale.

The Cumbre Vieja volcano on the Spanish island of La Palma, in the Canary archipelago, under close surveillance for days due to intense seismic activity, erupted for the first time since 50 years, the local authorities indicated this Sunday 19.

“The eruption started in the area of ​​Cabeza de Vaca, in El Paso,” the local government of the island (cabildo) said on its Twitter account, which has started to carry out evacuations in the most inhabited areas. near the volcano. “The population is asked to exercise extreme caution and stay away from the eruption area to avoid any unnecessary risk,” he continued. “The volcano has erupted in a forest area,” said the president of the Canary Islands region, Angel Victor Torres, calling for caution.

In the process, Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez announced that he was going to visit the island of La Palma. “In view of the situation on the island of La Palma, the president of the government has postponed his trip planned today to New York,” for the United Nations General Assembly, “and will visit the islands this afternoon Canary Islands to follow the evolution of the situation, “said the press service of the Spanish government in a statement.

Large columns of smoke, ash and lava jets were escaping from the volcano, according to the first images broadcast live by Spanish public television around 10 h 30.

The Cumbre Vieja volcano had been under close surveillance for a week after the Canary Islands Volcanological Institute recorded several thousand low-magnitude earthquakes, up to nearly 4 on the Richter scale. Millions of cubic meters of magma had also moved inside the volcano while the ground had risen by about centimeters in the volcano area.

The authorities, who had told the population to be ready for several days, proceeded a few hours before the eruption to the evacuation of people with reduced mobility in the municipalities closest to the volcano, on this island located off the coast of the volcano. Northwest Africa.

Last eruption in 1971

“All administrations are prepared to act in a coordinated manner,” Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez assured on his Twitter account. The Interior Ministry said more than 200 members of the security forces had been mobilized with a helicopter.

The last eruption of Cumbre Vieja took place in 1971. Of volcanic origin, the Spanish Canary Islands archipelago experienced its last eruption in 2011, this time underwater, at the island of El Hierro.

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