Mount Etna briefly erupts on Italy’s Sicily island

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SICILY, ITALY (BNO NEWS) — Mount Etna, which is located on the east coast of the Italian island of Sicily, briefly erupted on late Wednesday evening, volcanists and witnesses said on Thursday.

Etna is the largest active volcano in Europe with a standing of 3,329 meters (10,922 feet) high. It is also one of the most active volcanoes in the world and has seen increased activity in recent months.


On Tuesday evening, the country’s Institute of Geophysics and Volcanology said it had recorded a slight increase in volcanic tremors that reached its peak by 7 a.m. local time on Wednesday. It then quickly diminished.

Hours later, at around 9.30 p.m. local time on Wednesday, a small eruption at Mount Etna sent lava down the mountain. “Shortly after [9 p.m.] an overflow began from the edge of the east pit crater,” a statement from the institute said, adding that the lava flow was expanding in the direction of Valle del Bove.

The eruption of Etna lasted only about an hour although the lava flow remained visible as of Thursday morning, lighting up the sky but posing no threat to the towns and cities near the volcano.

As it was dark at the time of the eruption, it was not immediately clear if Etna had created an ash cloud. “The emission of volcanic ash is possible,” the institute added.

(Copyright 2010 by BNO News B.V. All rights reserved. Info: sales@bnonews.com.)

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