Violent phase of explosive/effusive activity observed at Etna, Italy

Violent phase of explosive/effusive activity observed at Etna, Italy

A violent phase of explosive/effusive activity began at Mount Etna early on June 15, 2014. Strombolian activity at the New SE crater and volcanic tremor started to increase on the evening of June 14. Airport authorities had to redirect flights to other airports in Sicily to avoid the hazardous ash clouds.

Near-continuous explosions from the several vents at the summit of the NSEC occurred in rapid succession and ejected glowing spatter to heights of 100-200 m during in what could be described as pulsating lava fountains. A vent at the eastern part of the summit occasionally ejected dark jets of ash and brown ash plumes from time to time from the northeastern rim of the crater, presumably from collapse events, VolcanoDiscovery reports.

Unfortunately, heavy cloud cover, approximately 10 cm of fresh hail and thunderstorm activity prevented detailed observations during most of the early afternoon. 

Lava effusion and pulsating low lava fountains continued from the New SE crater throughout the night and today, June 16th. Tremor remains at fluctuating elevated levels but with a now slightly decreasing trend.

Current tremor amplitude (ESLN station, INGV Catania)

The lava flows have descended the western slope into the Valle del Bove where they spread into several broad fronts.

Featured image: INGV-OE Catania - Mount Etna IR image

Tags: etna

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