Clouds of smoke covered the volcanic island of Stromboli again on Monday morning, but there were no reports of casualties or damage from the latest eruption, recorded at around 4am on Monday morning by Italy’s National Institute of Geophysics and Volcanology (INGV).
This followed an eruption on Sunday which led Italian civil protection authorities to raise the alert level from yellow to orange on the small island, which is part of the Aeolian archipelago off northern Sicily.
As with the eruption on Sunday, Monday morning’s explosion sent plumes of smoke and ash into the air and waves described as ‘mini tsunamis’ in local media.
Volcanologists said the eruption and fast-moving lava flow into the sea triggered seismic waves registered by the tsunami warning system.
A timelapse video of the eruption on Sunday shared by Marco Pistolesi, Professor of Volcanology at the University of Pisa, showed the dramatic moment a heavy stream of lava collided with the sea after a “partial collapse of the crater rim”.
After days/weeks of increased activity (which included a major explosion and 2 effusive events) at #stromboli, this morning a partial collapse of the crater rim generated a flow and initiated a lava effusion. Ondametric gauges recorded a 2-cm tsunami@LGS_UNIFI pic.twitter.com/P2vPmmX4ne
— Marco Pistolesi (@m_pistolesi) October 9, 2022
The Stromboli volcano is one of the most active on the planet, and has been erupting almost continuously for the past 90 years.
Authorities on the island said they were well prepared for a major eruption.
“We are absolutely prepared,” Mayor of Lipari Riccardo Gullo told Italian news agency Adnkronos, adding that there were “about 600 people on the island, including residents and tourists” but that there was currently no cause for concern in the inhabited areas.
Sul blog di INGVvulcani, la fotonotizia sull'attività eruttiva di Stromboli del 9 ottobre 2022 e la variazione del livello di allerta.https://t.co/l17OrEQWmi #INGV #osservatorioetneo #stromboli #sorveglianzavulcanica pic.twitter.com/W7QDOofQB2
— INGVvulcani (@INGVvulcani) October 9, 2022
People were however advised to stay indoors and keep away from windows and glass doors as the civil protection agency raised the volcanic activity alert level from yellow to orange.
Boats were also warned to keep a greater distance from the coast, but Gullo stressed that ferry services to and from the island continued for now.
“We will evaluate if it is necessary to move some ships to ensure a possible evacuation of the island but I repeat: we are prepared,” he said.
“There has been no stop to the hydrofoils and tourists continue to arrive on the island to attend this show.”
#stromboli #volcano Well it certainly got quite hairy there today. This was around 6pm and a strong backwind offered a degree of protection. Filmed well below the 290mtr limit. Hasty retreat for pizza and moretti and new underpants 😐 pic.twitter.com/Z8OGYiQvkY
— Steven H (@volcanohull) October 9, 2022
In 2002 a huge explosion on Stromboli caused a tidal wave, and in 2019 a tourist died in a powerful eruption that covered the island in ash.
The island of Stromboli, 12 square kilometres (4.6 square miles) in area and 924 metres (3,000 feet) high, is just the top of a volcano that is largely underwater.
It is one of few in the world with almost continuous activity, according to INGV.