La Palma volcano: Canary Islands hit by 40 tremors in 48 hours

The popular holiday island is being monitored for volcanic activity

Helen Coffey
Wednesday 11 October 2017 12:26 BST
La Palma is the most volcanic of the Canary Islands
La Palma is the most volcanic of the Canary Islands

La Palma, one of the Canary Islands, was hit by a series of mini-earthquakes at the weekend, measuring between 1.5 and 2.7 on the Richter scale.

Between Saturday 7 and Tuesday 10 October the island experienced 50 tremors, with the biggest taking place on Saturday at 1pm.

However, the tremors took place at a depth of around 17 miles below sea level – deep enough that people on the island didn’t feel them.

La Palma is the most actively volcanic of the Canary Islands; its most recent eruption took place in 1971, when the Cumbre Vieja volcano spewed lava.

The recent set of tremors is catagorised as a “seismic swarm”, a phenomenon that is not considered abnormal, director of the IGN in the Canary Islands, María José Blanco, told Canarias7.

She noted, however, that they had “never recorded a similar swarm” since they started monitoring seismic activity on La Palma.

The IGN and the Volcanological Institute of the Canary Islands (Involcan) are now keeping a closer eye on La Palma’s volcanic activity in light of the swarm.

La Palma is the most north westerly of the Canary Islands, home to more than 86,000 residents.

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