No end in sight to La Palma eruption, says Canaries leader

A volcano continues to erupt on La Palma on Saturday. (AP pic)


LA PALMA: There is no immediate end in sight to the volcanic eruption that has caused chaos on the Spanish isle of La Palma since it began about a month ago, the president of the Canary Islands said yesterday.

There were 42 seismic tremors on the island yesterday, the largest of which measured 4.3, according to the Spanish National Geographical Institute.

“There are no signs that an end of the eruption is imminent even though this is the greatest desire of everyone,” president Angel Víctor Torres said at a Socialist party conference in Valencia, citing the view of scientists.

Streams of lava have laid waste to more than 742 hectares of land and destroyed almost 2,000 buildings on La Palma since the volcano started erupting on Sept 19.

About 7,000 people have been evacuated from their homes on the island, which has about 83,000 inhabitants and forms part of the Canary Islands archipelago off northwestern Africa.

All of the 38 flights which were scheduled to arrive or take off from La Palma airport yesterday were cancelled because of ash from the volcano, state airport operator Aena said, but the airport there remains open.