Residents of La Palma must shut down as lava from the volcano pours into the sea
Reuters – Authorities in Spain’s Canary Islands have told residents of the west coast of La Palma will seal doors and windows with duct tape and damp towels to ward off toxic gases spewed out by the lava from the Cumbre Vieja volcano when it reached the sea.
Glowing lava gushing from the volcano for 10 days dumped a cliff into the sea early Wednesday in the area of Playa Nueva near the town of Tazacorte.
As day dawned, glowing lava protruded above the waterline of the Atlantic Ocean, send clouds of steam and poisonous gases into the sky. Clouds of smoke billowed from the volcano and molten rock as it flowed down the western flank of Cumbre Vieja.
“All people within a radius of 2 km have been evacuated” and a larger area is in confinementTazacorte Mayor Juan Miguel Rodriguez Acosta told TV3, adding that no further evacuation was necessary as long as the cloud moved east. He said all roads to the southern part of the islands had been cut by lava.
The Canary Islands Emergency Service urged those outside within 3.5 km of the affected area to immediately find a safe place to take cover. No injuries were reported.
Emergency services also have tell people to protect their mouths and noses with a damp cloth. Since the eruption began on September 19, lava has engulfed nearly 600 houses as well as banana plantations in La Palma, neighboring Tenerife in the Canary Islands off the North African coast.
Thousands of people were evacuated and three coastal villages were locked on Monday in anticipation of lava entering the sea.
Spain has classified La Palma as a disaster area Tuesday, a decision that trigger financial support for the island.