The evolution of the La Palma volcano misleads the experts and has the neighbors in suspense

A constant roar has prevented the palm trees from breathing calmly since September 19, the date on which the Cumbre Vieja volcano woke up. They have been on permanent alert for more than three weeks. Because when it seems that his fury takes a step back, after a few hours it shows that he was only gathering strength to advance another two. And the experts begin to confess that Although they feared that the volcano “was not going to be good”, it is being “worse than expected”, in the words of Carmen Romero, professor of Physical Geography at the University of La Laguna, in an interview with Efe.

The volcano also seems to be wrestling with history, because curiously the eruptions of La Palma have been decreasing in duration over the years. The first recorded was that of Tajuya in 1585, which lasted 84 days. The following were shortened: that of Tigalate (1646) was active for 82 days; that of San Antonio (1677-1678), 66; that of El Charco (1712), 56; that of San Juan (1949), 42; and that of Teneguía (1971), 24.

One hypothesis was that the magmatic chambers were smaller. Hence, it could be assumed that This eruption –which turns 22 days today– lasted less time than that of Teneguía, but it does not look like that, “and what it has done has been to contradict a kind of trend tradition,” Eduardo Martínez de Pisón, emeritus professor of Geography at the Autonomous University of Madrid, tells the same agency.

The destruction that the volcano leaves in its wake increases day by day, and neither by land nor by sea nor by air does it give a truce. For one thing, after the north face of the cone collapsed, heThe new wash that emerged destroyed the few houses that had stood in Todoque. At the end of Sunday, the devastated area on the island amounted to 525 hectares and the maximum width of the wash was 1,520 meters.

On the amount of magma ejected since it all started, The experts do not coincide: if one attends to the calculations of the Volcanological Institute of the Canary Islands (Involcan), the figure rises to 39.6 million cubic meters; But if the satellites that monitor the situation from space are paid attention, it increases to 60 million cubic meters, as pointed out by the scientific spokesperson for the Canary Islands Volcanic Emergency Plan (Pevolca), María José Blanco.

The Minister of Defense, Margarita Robles, visits the island of La Palma this Sunday.

Likewise, if you descend from the surface of the island to sea level, the strip that is forming on the coast already covers 34 hectares and reaches deeper heights each time. As reported yesterday by the Cabildo de La Palma, this is bordering the limit of the insular platform, that is, the shallower zone. When it surpassed it, the Cabildo warned that a landslide could occur that would cause waves.

Now coming down from the sea to the interior of the earth, there is also no stability. Seismicity continues to be high, and the National Geographic Institute (IGN) yesterday reported that in the last 48 hours they had registered a total of 214 earthquakes, 19 of them felt by the population.

The maximum intensity corresponded to an earthquake detected on Saturday of magnitude 3.6 at 11 kilometers deep. And finally, emerging from the depths of the Earth into the atmosphere, the news is also unsettling. María José Blanco (scientific spokesperson for Pevolca) advanced that because of the wind today the ash cloud may again affect the operation of the La Palma airport, sIn ruling out that the aerodromes of Tenerife are also harmed.

Nine washes since it erupted

After part of the main cone of the volcano collapsed on Saturday (right, a photographic sequence from that moment), new rivers of lava began to slide down the slope. Since the eruption began, nine flows have been counted, of which 1, 7 and 8 are active. The collapse of SaturdayIt precisely reactivated the latter two, which are being monitored by the Military Emergency Unit (UME). Another of the streams – number 2 – stopped about 40 meters away from the sea, so if it were to reactivate, it could end up feeding the fajana.

The volcano in figures

Before and after images of the volcano captured via satellite.
  • 1,186 buildings they have been destroyed by lava, according to Copernicus data. Besides, another 95 are at risk.
  • 4,522 tons daily of sulfur dioxide and 1,958 of carbon dioxide emits
    the volcano, which does not put the locals at risk.
  • 525 hectares has razed the volcano since it erupted on 19
    September, three weeks ago.
  • 34 hectares It encompasses the fajana that is forming on the coast as a result of the arrival of the lava to the Atlantic
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