The La Palma Volcanoes Have Erupted


(Used under creative commons license)

Zakary Robinette

Volcanoes on the island of La Palma, a part of the Canary Islands, have erupted, forcing people to evacuate and and leaving the chance that their homes might be destroyed.

La Palma is an island part of a Spanish archipelago, called the Canary Islands which has a population of 2.207 million–La Palma is home to 85,000 of the 2.207 million. La Palma is currently dealing with volcanic eruptions, threatening the people’s lives and homes. As of now, no injuries or deaths have been reported, but people are panicking.

Experts are saying that if the lava reaches the ocean, there could be explosions and clouds of toxic gas which would affect the people and ecosystem. Authorities are blocking off two nautical miles (2.30156 miles) around the area. Council Chief Mariano Hernandez said, “To prevent onlookers on boats and prevent the gasses from affecting people.” Hernandez told people who are attracted to the eruption to stay off the roads to prevent road collapse and damage.

So far, the lava destruction has taken 166 houses and more are likely to meet the same fate. Emergency responders have told residents that they do not need to panic as long as they follow the procedures for a possible evacuation of the island. If the lava reaches the water, people will need to stay away because of the gasses and explosions. Chief Angel Victor Torres stated, “When the lava reaches the sea, it will be a critical moment.” If the wind starts to pick up volcanic ash, there will be an heavier impact of the eruption on the surrounding environment and people.

There are rivers of lava around the volcano, some reaching up to 6 meters high (around 20 feet). So far around 6000 people have evacuated and more are also planning to evacuate the island. Scientists are saying that the lava could last on the surface for months, affecting all of the Canary Islands.

Volcanic ash clouds have started to cover the La Palma airport, causing it to close. The airport doesn’t want to risk the planes getting damaged or destroyed from the ash, which would cost lots of money and maybe people’s lives. The Canary Islands authorities said another vent of magma and ash has opened up and lava has been sliding down mountains destroying everything, causing a threat to the island.

The Lava has slowed down quite a lot, giving people time to evacuate to safety. So far, no injuries have been reported, and hopefully none will be. When the lava clears up, La Palma and the rest of the Canary Islands will be back to normal.