Science

House-to-house map of the advance of the La Palma volcano: the lava reaches 770 buildings and threatens another 1,500

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Data updated on 28 of September 09. 08 (Spanish peninsular time)

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The unstoppable advance of lava through the Aridane Valley continues to engulf homes, roads and everything in its path, as shown by satellite images. The outlook is bleak: near 270 hectares razed and 600 or 800 buildings destroyed, according to the source and the counting method used (see methodology) . This is the situation on Tuesday morning, when the lava was more than a kilometer from the beach. During the night a language reached the coast, but that progress has not yet been captured by the images.

The map prepared by EL PAÍS represents the extent of the lava each day, the predictions of its advance, the damaged houses and those at risk. The perimeter of the lava in its advance is collected by the Copernicus program, the prediction is from the University of La Laguna, and the information on the constructions, from the Cadastre.

Below is the advance of the lava day by day:

Monday (day 1). The first satellite survey collected the perimeter of the streams on Monday afternoon. On 30 hours, the lava advanced more than three kilometers in the direction of the sea and covered 100 hectares of land . On his way he destroyed 232 buildings , most houses and annexes.

Tuesday (day 2). The second image arrived 12 hours later. The lava tongues had grown a 50% and already covered 155 hectares. In their advance destroy 147 more buildings , mostly residences, but also 20 for agricultural, industrial or commercial use.

Wednesday (day 3). Passes 36 hours, the laundry slows down – the area covered by lava increases by just 10 hectares—, but gobbles up another thirty buildings .

Thursday (day 4). The laundry accelerates again and in 12 hours the covered area has been extended 15 hectares. In that advance, gobble up 60 buildings.

Saturday (day 7). At 7 a.m, 48 hours after the last update, the laundry progressed 31 hectares.

Sunday (day 8).

The advance of the lava accelerated again and in 24 hours advanced 21 hectares.

Monday (day 9). On Sunday the laundry continued to advance and engulfed another group of houses as the Todoque hole crossed the road. The lava surface spread 26 hectares.

Tuesday (day 10). . From Monday to Tuesday, the laundry progressed little. The lava surface spread 10 hectares and sum 270. The total number of buildings buried is 770 .

And now that? The graph shows possible trajectories of the lava according to a simulation by the University of La Laguna. In the area at risk there are some 1500 buildings.

The speed of advance has been uneven during the week. Lava covered 150 hectares in the first 48 hours (3 per hour), then just advance 10 in the following 36 hours (0.3 per hour). Since last Thursday, the lava has advanced 88 hectares in 5 days (0, 75 per hour). From Monday to Tuesday, time of the last image, the lava spread in 10 hectares. During the night a tongue rushed to the sea, although the image still does not show it.

The laundry has already swallowed some 770 buildings, according to the latest satellite image. According to the cadastre, the majority are houses, garages and other residential constructions, although also 90 buildings for industrial, commercial or agricultural use.

Others 1500 are intact but at risk, the majority heading sea. They are the buildings that are found on the possible trajectories of the lava languages, according to the probabilistic predictions of the University of La Laguna.

El domingo 26 de septiembre SkySat capturó la primera imagen por satélite en la que se aprecia la colada de lava. Se trata de una imagen en falso color que permite apreciar mejor las dimensiones de la erupción. El domingo 26 de septiembre SkySat capturó la primera imagen por satélite en la que se aprecia la colada de lava. Se trata de una imagen en falso color que permite apreciar mejor las dimensiones de la erupción.

On Sunday 26 September SkySat captured the first satellite image showing lava flow. It is a false color image that allows you to better appreciate the dimensions of the eruption. Planet Labs Inc. / AP

Methodology. The cartography of the area occupied by the lava is offered by the Copernicus satellite image program, at different times of the day. The prediction of the possible advance of the pouring is a probabilistic estimate of the University of La Laguna. We have taken the information on the constructions from the Cadastre, which provides the location, plan and photo of each building. The calculation of the number of buildings under the lava is an approximation and may contain some errors, both by excess (for example, if a building is close to the wash, but safe), and by default (if there are constructions that do not appear in the registry).

Jacob Vicente López has collaborated in the development of this article.

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