New fissure opens on La Palma volcano amid eight more earthquakes

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A new crack opened on the erupting La Palma volcano, as officials recorded eight new earthquakes of magnitude 3.5.

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This is the third open since the Cambre Vieja crater erupted on 19 September. Officials waited to see if lava from the new fissure would join the main flow, which has reached the Atlantic Ocean and expanded the surface of the island.

So far over 6,000 people have been evacuated and no casualties have been reported.


Officials were monitoring the air quality along the shoreline where the molten rock met the sea. The government of La Palma said sulfur dioxide levels rose in the area, but there was no health hazard.

However, it advised the local residents to stay indoors. It also recommended that people on the island wear face masks and eye protection from heavy falls of volcanic ash.

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Satellite imagery shows that the lava struck more than 1,000 buildings, including homes and farming infrastructure, of which about 850 were completely destroyed. At least 18 miles of roads were destroyed and about 835 acres of land was covered with lava.

La Palma, home to about 85,000 people who live mostly from fruit farming and tourism, is part of the volcanic Canary Islands, a Spanish archipelago off northwest Africa.

The island is about 22 miles long and 12 miles wide at its widest point. Life has continued as normal on most of the islands while the volcano is active. COVID-19 restrictions are in place, including wearing of masks and social distancing.

Additional reporting by The Associated Press


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