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Etna does not allow itself to be “second” to any other volcano in the world! That is what Cumbre Vieja, on the Spanish island of La Palma – Canary archipelago – learned the hard way. It started a spectacular eruption on the afternoon of Sunday 19th September. The lava came out of a fracture that opened a few kilometers from the houses of the town. It then went on and overwhelmed villages and tourist facilities while 5,000 people were rescued.

etna eruption 51 bis
ashes falling down

From Sicily, Mount Etna resumes the scene just 48 hours later, on the morning of Tuesday 21st September. It seems as if the great volcano – the highest active volcano in Europe – had once again decided to prove who is in charge, in this side of the world!

Paroxysm number 51 thus began around 9:30 in the morning, continuing until almost noon. Remarkable ash columns were pushed up by lava fountains as high as 800 meters above the level of the summit craters. The protagonist, as always, is the South East Crater  . The former “little one” has now become a gigantic cone. The high altitude winds pushed the eruptive “plume” towards the Ionian Sea … . However there was a fall of large lapilli and ash on the eastern side of the mountain. The ash creates considerable inconvenience to the local population. But thanks to this “energy vent”, the danger of a devastating lateral eruption – like that of the island of La Palma – is now removed. (photos by GRAZIA MUSUMECI)

Autore: Grazia Musumeci

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