Lava flowing from Spain’s Canary Islands’ first volcanic eruption in 50 years has forced the evacuation of 5,500 people and destroyed around 100 houses but the streams were advancing slower than originally predicted, authorities said on Monday.
The flow of molten rock will not reach the Atlantic Ocean on Monday evening as earlier estimated, an official said. Experts say that if and when it does, it could trigger more explosions and clouds of toxic gases.
“The movement of lava is much slower than it was initially … There has not been a large advance during the day,” local emergency coordinator Miguel Angel Morcuende told a press briefing on Monday evening. He said the stream had made its way about halfway to the coast.
A new stream of lava erupted from the volcano late on Monday, prompting the evacuation of residents in the town of El Paso, the regional emergency agency wrote on Twitter.