ROME (AP) — A particularly spectacular blast from Italy’s Mount Etna volcano belched out a towering cloud of ash and lava stone Sunday onto Sicilian villages, the latest in a series of explosions since mid-February.
Italy’s national geophysics and volcanology institute INGV said the powerful explosion at 2 a.m. was the 10th such big blast since Feb. 16, when Europe’s most active volcano started giving off an impressive demonstration of nature’s fire power, coloring the night sky in shocking hues of orange and red.
Increasing tremors rattled the mountain throughout much of the night. Ash and small lava stones rained down on eight villages on Etna’s slopes Sunday morning, while lava flowed from the southeast crater slowly down an uninhabited side, as it has been doing for the last three weeks, the institute said.
The column of ash and lava reached a height of 10,000 meters (33,000 feet) on Sunday, according to scientists who monitor volcanic activity with specialized instruments from an observatory at Etna in eastern Sicily.
Locals swept ash and lava stones from their front steps and balconies. They have taken to covering cars parked outdoors with carpets, blankets and sheets of cardboard to make cleanup easier after each blast. Winds helped carry the ash eastward, INGV said.
No injuries or serious damage have been reported after the recent blasts. Geologically active, Etna occasionally becomes particularly noisy and explosive as it has been lately.
By mid-morning, Etna’s latest display of activity had slowed somewhat with the lava flow ending, although the volcano was still puffing out “weak emission of ash” from the southeast crater.
A few hours later, the volcanic tremors picked up again, INGV said in a statement.
The INGV scientists say there is no way of predicting when this current round of particularly robust volcanic activity might subside.
Today’s Top Stories
- Nintendo is bringing back a super-retro handheld from the 1980s
- ‘Anonymous’ hacker group threatens to “expose many crimes” of Minneapolis PD
- New details about Lake Powell boat crash
- Man dies after hit by car; driver booked for fleeing scene
- Military family robbed in Salt Lake City
- Parents, teachers, students sound off on later school start times
- Church leaders update COVID-19 safety measures for Utah
- APNewsBreak: Lawsuit claims Utah’s Grand America exploited immigrants
- Family announces they’ll say goodbye to Dixie, a dog burned for revenge
- Congressman’s siblings release an attack ad against their own brother