The Cumbre Vieja ridge in the Canary Islands of La Palma, Spain is home to volcanic mountains. An intense seismic movement and deformation activity that occurred on the 11th of September triggered the Cumbre Vieja volcanic ridge to erupt on September 19, 2021.
La Palma previously erupted in 1971 when a volcanic vent named Teneguía was triggered by an earthquake in La Palma. The current eruption on the Cumbre Vieja volcano is caused by a different vent far north of the Teneguía eruption site.
Around 7500 people have been evacuated from the villages surrounding the ridge prior to the eruption in 2021. The lava is constantly on the move and many more people are being evacuated at present. So far there have been no injuries except for one death caused due to inhalation of toxic air.
Planes flying through or into La Palma have been canceled indefinitely due to ashfall. There have been eight volcanic eruptions on the ridge but the 2021 eruption has done the most damage according to records. The town of Todoque and its neighbor Los Campitos have been completely destroyed. The lava is now flowing towards La Laguna, a famous tourist destination in Los Llanos de Aridane covering around 2500 acres of land.
A part of the volcano collapsed on the 26th of September forming newer vents across the surface area of the ridge. A few extra vents followed on 1st October contributing lava the size of a 3 story building. Researchers have categorized the eruption under the fissure eruption Strombolian eruption category. The 4 Richter magnitude earthquakes are constantly increasing the lava flow.
The lava flow reached the sea at the New Beach, Tazacorte. The heating of the seawater to a high temperature might produce laze containing emissions of sulfuric, hydrochloric, and hydrofluoric acid into the air. Seismographs indicate that these volcanoes could trigger a megatsunami if a 9th earthquake were to happen on the volcano.