volcanic eruption on the Spanish island of La Palma 100 homes have been destroyed and 500 tourists have been forced to flee.
La Cumbre Vieja volcano erupted on Sunday shooting 1,000C of lava hundreds of meters into the air toward cities and forcing thousands to evacuate.
No casualties were reported, but the volcano was still active on Monday as experts fear the eruption could last for weeks or months.
Mariano Hernandez, President of the Council of La Palma ser string So far about 100 houses have been destroyed by the lava flow.
Canary Islands regional president Angel Victor Torres said Monday morning that local authorities had evacuated about 5,000 people from four villages, including El Paso and Los Llanos de Ariadne.
About 500 tourists were rescued from a hotel in the coastal resort of Puerto Naos and offered emergency accommodation in an old barracks in Santa Cruz.
Mayor Sergio Rodriguez said the molten rock was now spreading to the village of Los Llanos de Ariadne, where “hundreds of homes are at risk”.
“The lava left absolutely nothing in its path”, Rodriguez told TVE.
Horrifying footage showed a river of orange-colored volcanic rock flowing into the garden of a home as firefighters made a desperate attempt to stop the lava.
Dramatic video shows lava erupting from the home’s ground floor windows as a river of molten rock entered the dining room.
The luxury home was one of 20 properties in the village of El Paso ravaged by an endless flow of volcanic rock erupting from the volcano overnight.
Another video shows a stream of magma swallowing a house as it disappeared beneath a plume of black and white smoke.
A local who filmed the destruction said: “The lava is moving towards those houses and will eat them. In the area down this road the lava is crossing at the moment, all the properties are going to disappear.”
But no further evacuation is needed as the lava moves toward the ocean and away from towns and villages, Torres said.
“The lava is moving towards the coast and the damage will be physical,” said the regional president.
Despite the destruction, Tourism Minister Reyes Maroto said the island was still open to tourists.
He told Canal Sur radio: “The island is open, if your hotel is affected we will find you another one.
“Make the most of this opportunity and enjoy what nature has given us.”
Warning to Brits
The British government has issued a warning to vacationers planning to travel to and from luxury holiday destinations last week after a volcano erupted and showed signs of activity.
The UK government said last night: “On Sunday 19 September 2021, at approximately 15.15 pm local time, there was a volcanic eruption on the Spanish Canary island of La Palma.
“The immediate area of Cabeza de Veca, El Paso, has been evacuated.
“If you are in an affected area, you should follow the advice of local authorities, including social media updates from Cabildo de la Palma.
“You are encouraged to contact your tour operators and airlines if you plan to visit the island soon.”
An evacuation plan was launched on Sunday after the blast and emergency services urged people to remain calm, keep their doors and windows closed and keep important documents on them.
People are also encouraged to keep their phone and battery-operated radio on at all times and those who have animals should follow evacuation guidelines.
Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez canceled a scheduled visit to New York for the UN General Assembly after the explosion and arrived at the scene late Sunday.
“All services are ready to work in a coordinated manner,” Sanchez wrote on Twitter.
Mariano Hernandez, the president of La Palma Island, has urged people to stay away from the eruption.
“People should not come near the explosion site where lava is flowing,” Hernandez said.
“We’re having a serious problem with evacuation because the streets are full of people trying to get close enough to see it.”
Local Canary Islands airline Binter has canceled four flights to and from the island of La Gomera, after a volcanic eruption on the neighboring island of La Palma sent ash and smoke into the sky.
The Cumbre Vieja extends a ridge to the south of the island of La Palma and has erupted twice in the 20th century, first in 1949 and again in 1971.
The eruption came after a week of seismic activity, in which nearly a thousand people have been evacuated from their homes.
thousands of shocks
An earthquake of magnitude 3.8 was recorded prior to the eruption as vibrations from the seismic activity were felt on the surface.
Roads were closed due to the blast and officials urged curious people not to venture into the area.
La Palma has a population of 85,000 and is one of eight islands in the Canary Islands of Spain.
Last week Spain’s National Geographic Institute said it had detected 4,222 aftershocks around the island of La Palma, which scientists are calling a swarm of earthquakes since last Saturday.
An earthquake swarm is a group of earthquakes in an area over a short period of time and may indicate an impending eruption.
Nearly 1,000 earthquakes have struck the islands since last Saturday.
On Tuesday, the regional government of the Canary Islands placed the island on a yellow alert for the eruption.
The last eruption on the Canary Islands took place under water off the coast of El Hierro Island in 2011 and lasted for five months.
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