Etna escape: ‘Pelted with prohibited debris’

EtnaImage copyright
Sam Robinson

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Etna is customarily doing something. That creates it a pull for scientists and tourists

When we arrived in Sicily, we detected that we were in luck: Mount Etna had only started to explode again.

I was partial of a BBC group who had come to film a news on volcano monitoring.

Getting to declare an awakened Etna was about as sparkling as it gets for a scholarship correspondent. we only didn’t intend to have utterly such a tighten encounter.

The conditions were ideal – blue skies and hardly any wind. And as we trafficked towards a snow-covered summit, a howling booms as Etna spewed magma from a south-east void reverberated all around.

Media captionRachel Price kept a camera rolling as we retreated

We had come to see a lava upsurge that had seemed overnight. A hulk tide of rock, intense red, was oozing down a slopes – and we had been taken there by a scientist from Italy’s National Institute of Geophysics and Volcanology, who was monitoring a progress.

Dozens of tourists had also been brought by Etna’s guides to see a spectacle.

The lava was so delayed relocating it’s not customarily deliberate dangerous, and a extreme feverishness as a rocks fizzled and crackled preventing anyone from removing too close.

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Clothing was burnt by as a prohibited stone fragments came down

But about 20 mins after arriving, a detonate of white steam emerged from a lava – it didn’t make many of a sound or demeanour generally melancholy – though a guides started seeking people to move.

Then, moments later, there was an explosion. The lava had churned with sleet and ice, and prohibited rocks and boulders were flung adult high into a air. They started to sleet down in each direction.

Everyone started to run, pelted with a deadly, prohibited debris. But it was unfit to see – steam from a blast had caused a whiteout.

Image copyright
Sam Robinson

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People had left adult a towering to see a new lava flow

I fell as we was perplexing to get away, perplexing to cover my head. All we could hear was a whack of rocks attack all around.

Image copyright
Sam Robinson

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We were on Etna to learn about new monitoring techniques

I truly suspicion that we were going to die. Somehow, a camerawoman Rachel Price kept on filming – her footage is astonishing.

Even when a prohibited stone fell into her coat, fast blazing by her garments and reaching her skin, she kept a camera rolling.

Producer Alison Francis, too, was strike by descending waste – her cloak was peppered with browns where rocks had struck, and her shawl saved her from a some-more critical strike to a head.

Amidst a chaos, a sound of an engine rose, and a motorist of a snowcat car that had taken us adult a slopes started to beep a horn to assistance us locate it.

Dodging some-more drifting rocks, we got on. A beam screamed in anguish from a dislocated shoulder, others were bloody, burnt and painful – though we had all managed to escape.

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We climbed into a snowcat with cuts, bruises and tiny burns

Badly shaken, we spoke to a volcanologist whose work we had been filming. Bleeding from a strike to a head, he told me it was a many dangerous occurrence he’d ever gifted during Etna, that he’d spent 30 years studying.

As we took batch and spoke to a medics who had fast seemed on a scene, it was startling to realize that there were no critical injuries or even deaths.

Watching Rachel’s footage back, we can see that we all had an intensely slight escape. It reminded us only how dangerous these army of inlet can be.

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Copernicus Sentinel information (2017)/ESA

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Europe’s Sentinel-2a satellite graphic Thursday’s lava upsurge from space

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