Saturday, 3 Jun 2023

Mount Etna volcano erupts and spews ash over Italy

Europe’s most active volcano has been erupting, raining ash which has cancelled flights in an Italian city.

Clouds of ash have been spewing from Mount Etna today, forcing flights from Catania Airport to be grounded due to a lack of visibility.

The weather over Mount Etna is fairly cloudy and rainy today, meaning it’s much more difficult than usual to spot the spectacular displays of lava pouring from the volcano.

But pictures taken in the town of Nicolosi show chunks of volcanic ash gathering on car windscreens and on the ground – with locals placing blankets and cardboard over their windscreens to protect them.

Italy’s National Institute of Geophysics and Volcanology said ash has fallen on the town of Catania, the largest city in eastern Sicily, as well as at least one town on Mount Etna’s inhabited slopes.

No injuries have been reported, amid monitoring by the institute which recorded evidence of an increase in tremor activity in recent days.

Residents of Adrano and Biancavilla reported hearing loud booms from the volcano earlier today.

Italy’s Civil Protection Agency sent out an alert on Thursday which warned that, due to increased volcanic activity, ‘sudden’ variations of the volcano’s activity could occur.

Mount Etna erupted for several weeks in 2021, and following a six-month period of activity the volcano’s height increased by 100ft because of the amount of volcanic material it spewed.

The southeastern crater is now the tallest part of the volcano.

The volcano is in an almost constant state of activity and it’s considered a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

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