Residents on the Spanish island of La Palma are tonight fleeing the threat of a new lava flow from the volcano.
Hundreds of people on La Palma in Spain’s Canary Islands have been awakened tonight in fear for their homes and property after a new lava stream from an erupting volcano threatened to engulf yet another neighbourhood on its way toward the Atlantic Ocean.
Island authorities had ordered the evacuation of 800 people from a section of the coastal town of Los Llanos de Aridane on Tuesday, October 12, after the lava changed course and put their homes in a path of destruction.
Around 6,000 people were immediately removed from the area in the hours after the initial Sept. 19 volcanic eruption when their homes and farms were directly below the path of the volcano’s initial lava stream.
Residents of the La Laguna neighbourhood were given just few hours to gather up their most precious belongings tonight and leave. Volunteers helped staff at a school in the neighbourhood salvage educational materials, while others loaded up cars and trucks with furniture.
Lava has so far completely destroyed over 1,400 buildings, including homes, farms and other structures, and covered 656 hectares (1,621 acres), including 90 hectares (more than 200 acres) dedicated to the growth of plantains. No lives have been lost.
La Palma is part of Spain’s Canary Islands, an Atlantic Ocean archipelago off northwest Africa whose economy depends on the cultivation of the Canary plantain and tourism.
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