Volcanic ash cloud closes airport on Spanish island, as new vent raises concerns – .

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Volcanic ash cloud closes airport on Spanish island, as new vent raises concerns – .


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The airport on the Spanish island of La Palma closed on Saturday due to an ash cloud escaping from a volcano that has erupted for a week, and scientists say another volcanic vent has opened , exposing the islanders to possible new dangers.

The intensity of the eruption that began on September 19 has increased in recent days, causing the evacuation of three additional villages on the island, which is part of the Spanish archipelago of the Canary Islands in the Atlantic Ocean offshore from northwest Africa. Almost 7,000 people have been forced to leave their homes.

The recent volcanic eruption is the first since 1971 in La Palma, which has a population of 85,000.

La Palma airport operator Aena said the airport was “inoperative” due to the build-up of ash. Other airports in the Canary Islands were still operating on Saturday, but some airlines were suspending flights, Aena said.

Mauricio, 40, throws ashes from his house in front of the airport closed on Saturday. (Nacho Doce / Reuters)

Tourists wait for the ferry to leave the island on Saturday after the airport closes. (Nacho Doce / Reuters)

People watch lava and smoke rise after the La Palma volcano erupted in La Laguna, Spain on Saturday. (Nacho Doce / Reuters)

Emergency crews withdrew from the volcano on Friday as explosions sent molten rock and ash over a large area. The Canary Islands Institute of Volcanology said another vent opened early on Saturday.

Rivers of lava slid down the mountain towards the island’s southwest coast, destroying everything in their path, including hundreds of homes.

A man throws ash from the top of his house after cleaning it up in La Laguna on Saturday, as smoke rises in the background after the volcano erupted. (Nacho Doce / Reuters)

Volcanic ash covers the ground in El Paso, Spain on Saturday. Text reads “Run Paco!” “ (Jon Nazca/Reuters)

A woman uses an umbrella to protect herself from falling ash in El Paso on Saturday. (Jon Nazca/Reuters)

However, the speed of the flow has slowed considerably and the lava is barely advancing, with about two kilometers to reach the sea, said Miguel Angel Morcuende, head of the Canary Islands volcanic emergency plan.

“I don’t dare tell you when it’s going to happen, nor do I dare to forecast,” Morcuende told reporters at a press conference.

div>WATCH | A drone video shows a ‘miracle house’ untouched by lava:

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Drone video shows lava-spared ‘miracle house’ on La Palma island

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