The International Information Center for Geotechnical Engineers

Monday, 07 January 2019 01:00

Mount Etna erupted in Sicily, Italy

Mount Etna erupts on Sicily Mount Etna erupts on Sicily.

Mount Etna, the most active volcano of Europe, erupted on Christmas Eve, causing numerous earthquakes and closing the airport of Catania.

The largest of the 130 seismic shocks reported was Mw 4.9, according to Italy's National Seismology Institute. Gaetano Maenza, a member of the Italian professional association of nature and interpretive guide, stated: "Tremors during eruptions are pretty normal here. What is unusual is the level of magnitude triggered by Etna. I have no memory of such intensity. It was scary."

The earthquake struck the north part of Catania causing some structural damage to houses and churches and injuring at least 10 people. Shelters in municipal buildings were provided to people whose properties were damaged or to those who were afraid to return to their residences.

Lava emerged from a new fissure close to Etna's south-eastern crater, according to the Mount's observatory. The eruption spread a large column of ash into the sky and caused the closure of Catania airport. 

The volcano recently erupted in 2017 but its last severe eruption occurred in 2009. Experts from the Italian National Institute for Geophysics and Volcanology stated that the mountain will be thoroughly monitored. "The recent seismic activity caused by the ongoing eruption is not unusual but potentially dangerous," said Marco Neri, a member of the institute.

According to updates on December 27, 2018, the airport of Catania is operating with minor problems including some delays following the effects of the eruption.


Read 236 times Last modified on Monday, 07 January 2019 16:07


Mount Etna erupts on Sicily

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