Increasing seismic activity in Canary Islands. Potential Eruption at El Hierro ?

Last update: 29 September 2011 at 08:32 UTC

On 16 July, seismicity at Hierro started to be high above the background levels. Until 19 September more than 7,200 events had been located, most of them in the El Golfo area with hypocenters that were 10 km deep, all magnitudes were below 3. The seismic activity alternated between relatively calm periods and high-energy periods. GPS local network stations showed deformations of about 2 cm. During 20-26 September the rates of both GPS deformation and seismic energy release significantly increased. On 23 September the Autonomous Canarian Government raised the Volcanic Alert Code to Yellow. On 27 september, the seismic activity drastically increased, with 10 felt events and maximum magnitude of 3.7. More information (in spanish) on the Instituto Geografico Nacional web site.

Another summary of the situation (in english) is available here