Violent #Explosions With #Eruption Column Rising 2 km, Triggering #Panic At #StromboliVolcano In #Italy
View of the eruption column at Stromboli volcano (image: Francesca Utano / VolcanoDiscovery)
A series of at least two very large explosions occurred this afternoon at the volcano. They probably rank among the largest recorded at the volcanoes in decades.
At approx. 16:51, 16:54, and 17:03 local time, it seems that the the western (or otherwise the central) vent produced powerful eruptions (in particular the latter two), which ejected glowing bombs all over the summit area and produced an eruption column that rose approx. 3-5 km.
Hot bombs and lapilli falling in the vegetated slopes of the island caused a series of fires. Panic was reported to have broken out among some residents in the village of Ginostra (which is at only 2 km horizontal distance from the crater), but there are no reports of injuries.
A newspaper article mentioned that some tourists fled into the sea and there are talks about evacuation of the island, although the situation is not clear at the moment.
What is is clear is that this so-called paroxysm today was one of the largest events of its kind on the volcano not only during recent years, but decades. Fortunately, such sudden large explosions have been rare at Stromboli (on average one or two per year), but they not entirely unusual. Unfortunately, they are almost impossible to predict and pose a constant risk for anyone visiting the summit area.
According to local news, the eruption was preceded by an overflow of lava into the Sciara del Fuoco, which seems to have been associated with the first explosion at around 16:51 (see image), suggesting that they were the result of a sudden surge in magma supply.
Courtesy of volcanodiscovery.com