An active lava flow ejected from the Cumbre Vieja volcano in La Palma (Canary Islands) has “bifurcated” in recent hours about 350 meters from the coastline, sweeping away, on one of the two sides, some banana fields and buildings so far spared: this was announced at a press conference by the technical director of the emergency plan for this natural disaster, Miguel Ángel Morcuende.
The technician added that some other crops could be damaged and that the new point where the lava is flowing very close to the sea is located further south than the main one, where in recent days a “volcanic delta” of several tens of hectares has been created. The air quality in the area of the eruption has worsened in recent hours, but for the moment there are no risks “for people who do not have problems of immune insufficiency,” added Morcuende. However, people with lung, asthma or heart problems are strongly recommended to stay indoors or wear Ffp2 masks in case they need to go outside. The weather and wind conditions that have led to the temporary closure of La Palma airport due to the accumulation of volcanic ash “will continue until Saturday, October 9,” said the spokeswoman for the scientific committee monitoring the eruption, María José Blanco. Regarding the seismic swarm observed in some points in the south of the island, Morcuende said that it is not considered likely that it could be an omen of the appearance of “a new lava emission center of the volcano in that area. Today was recorded the strongest tremor since the eruptive process started: 4.3 magnitude, although at a depth of 35 kilometers.