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Volcanic eruption on the island of La Palma

The Cumbre Vieja area, on the island of La Palma, has been erupting since Sunday 19th September. However, life continues as normal on most of the island, with the exception of the municipalities of El Paso, Los Llanos de Aridane, Tazacorte, Mazo and Fuencaliente, which are currently in a red traffic light situation. The rest of the Canary Islands are not affected.

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24-hour monitoring and safety

Because of the volcanic origin of the islands, the entire archipelago has always been monitored 24 hours a day. This task is carried out by the scientific volcanology committee of the Canary Islands, the specialisation and efficiency of which is key to making the necessary predictions, thus guaranteeing the safety of the population.

At present all the inhabitants (residents and tourists) are out of harm’s way and the island is absolutely safe outside of the perimeter boundaries established around the volcano.

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Controlled risk and active services

The eruption of Cumbre Vieja, on the island of La Palma, is a strombolian eruption, as all the eruptions in the history of the Canary Islands have been. These types of eruption do not pose a huge risk to the population, as their explosions are sporadic and generally speaking not too violent, and the lava is not ejected continuously. For now, information on the duration of the eruption is uncertain, and it could range from several weeks to several months.

The airspace of the Canary Islands is currently open, and there are no plans to close it due to the type of eruption and the behaviour of the volcano. The ash cloud is not rising to a high altitude and transport connections are guaranteed for now. Moreover, in anticipation of possible complications, the archipelago’s shipping lines have increased their activity in order to guarantee mobility.

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Recommendations

If you are on the island of La Palma:
Follow the recommendations of @112canarias on Twitter (Spanish and English) and all of the updates at all times

If you are due to travel to the island of La Palma soon:
Consult your airline and accommodation first to make sure the area you are travelling to does not lie within the evacuation zone.

If you are due to travel to another island soon:
If you are travelling to Gran Canaria, Lanzarote, La Graciosa, Fuerteventura, Tenerife, La Gomera or El Hierro, you can do so with total peace of mind. The rest of the Canary Islands are not affected by the eruption.

 

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