El Hierro Volcano eruption (Canary Islands) : Part 11 – November 9 until November 11, 2011

This is Part 11 of the El Hierro Volcano eruption report


Some of this info is also posted into our Facebook Volcano PageGoogle+ VolcanoesGoogle+ Volcanoes and earthquakes
With the collaboration of Joke Volta, an El Hierro resident

Read also: Scientific paper reveals massive historic Tenerife volcano flank collapse
Read also: Economic impact on El Hierro and the Canary Islands if an aerial eruption would occur
Read also
: Part 1 (from July 28 until early September)
Read also: Part 2 (from September 25 until October 10 )
Read also: Part 3 (from October 11 until October 13 )
Read also: Part 4 (from October 14 until October 17 )
Read also: Part 5 (from October 18 until October 21 )
Read also: Part 6 (from October 22 until October 26 )
Read also: Part 7 (from October 27 until October 31 )
Read also: Part 8 (from November 1 until November 3
Read also: Part 9 (from November 4 until November 6
Read also: Part 10 (from November 7 until November 8)
Read also: Part 11 (from November 9 until November 11)
Read also: Part 12 (from November 12 until November 15)
Read also: Part 13 (from November 16 until November 19)
Read also: Part 14 (from November 20 until November 23)
Read also: Part 15 (from November 24 until November 27)

Update 11/11 - 22:46 UTC
- The strength of the earthquakes has calmed down a little bit, but we expect to see new burbujas or jacuzzi's soon as the harmonic tremor graph showed some strong bursts. The M 1.7 quake from 21:40 burst was shallower but still secure at 15 km depth.  Harmonic tremor at the contrary made some serious jumps (below). These burst cannot be linked to the registered earthquakes. Accordingly they have to linked to magma movement below the island.

Update 11/11 - 18:54 UTC
- The Politolana ROV on board of the Oceanographic Ship Ramon Margalef has made a number of video recordings. The video shows the seabed and observes the remaining marine life. The first part has been recorded at 6 km distance from the vent and at a depth of 150 to 220 meter,  the second part  at 2 km from the vent and at a depth of 235 to 370 meter and the last part at a distance of 1 km from the vent, a depth of 200 meter and 480 meter above new lava layers. The visibility was 80 cm.
The gap between the 2 green laser lights is used by the scientists to calculate the size of what they are observing.

Update 11/11 - 17:54 UTC
- Providing that the harmonic tremor scale hasn't been rescaled by IGN,  we notice a difference in strength and frequency since 15:30 UTC (see below). Joke, overlooking the vent area, nor the people looking at the webcam have noticed any change in the sea surface.

The La Restinga webcam part 2
We are really euphoric at earthquake-report.com to see the the nice pictures now.
We truly think we owe a BIG THANK YOU to a number of persons who have been pressuring the local authorities to do something about it like JOKE VOLTA and the LasPuntas geologist and also member of the board Mr. ATILANO.
Joke started a couple of weeks ago to look for an urgent solution. As Mr. Atilano had already a webcam at the El Golfo area and knew something about the technology, it was obvious that Joke started to ask mr. Atilano on here naked knees (a proverb in Europe) to also install a webcam at La Restinga. She also talked to almost everybody in El Pinar who could influence a decision to install it and/or to pay for it.  Many promises were made and not followed. She started to become sarcastic about it, but she kept faith that it would arrive after all.
We also owe a big thank you to the many readers like Jorrit, Ingrid, Angie, Hans-Werner, etc (i am forgetting surely a number of other people) who proposed to help in setting up websites, hosting servers,  sending equipment, etc.
The webcam today is not only the work of those who made it work, but also because of the efforts of many people (also other local people who believed in it).

The NEW La Restinga webcam part 1
I know ... you will not believe us anymore, but we have seen it with our own eyes : The 2 La Restinga webcams are active and  prepared to have big loads of viewers ? Well, we do not dare to say it anymore, as nr. one showing part of La Restiga and the port had a hard time in loading a couple if minutes after we saw it first. The other one, see image below (click on it ot go to the realtime webcam) was still working a few moments ago.

the new Babildo - Telefonica webcams at La Restinga - image on the Las Calmas sea - Click on the picture to go to the webcam page

Update 11/11 - 13:19 UTC
- Diario de Avisos writes that IGN scientists have confirmed that an eruption in the El Golfo area is possible and that an eruption on the coast itself cannot be excluded. To make this happen, more powerful earthquakes are needed to allow the magma to the surface.
- Scientists have also said the the eruption in the La Restinga, Las Calmas sea area is still continuing although almost nothing can be seen on the surface.

Update 11/11 - 13:59 UTC
- We had to cut a part of this page (because of too long loading times) and made Part 10 of it. The links to all the different parts are shown above.

The El Hierro Webcam soap (continued)
Diario El Hierro writes just before noon that the Cabildo (El Hierro board) and Telefonica will announce today the long awaited webcam overlooking the Las Calmas sea. The obscure comment currently on the page will hopefully be removed.
+ we will have 2 webcamas ready, 1 in the north (El Golfo) and 1 in the south (Las Calmas sea).
Instead of just putting the device to work, both parties have called a press conference at 13:30 local time today, to tell what we probably will see.

Update 11/11 - 13:19 UTC:
will be meeting today at 12:00 (noon)

Update 11/11 - 10:44 UTC:
- Jose Manuel Soria
, the candidate of the Partido Popular for the presidency of the Canary Islands (elections to be held on November 20), is currently campaigning at El Hierro and wants to visit Montaña Naos to have a view at the eruption area.  He may not be aware of all the journalists he will find at this viewing spot ...
The evacuated people at El Hierro as well as the business sector are highly dependent on aid from the Canary Islands government.
- Paulino Rivero, e memeber of the Coalicion Canarias party, is the current president of the Canary Islands and apart of a lot of promises, only little has been done to help the people of La Restinga and Las Puntas. Mr. Rivera has now approved bills for direct aid to business owners employing personnel.
- The central government has now given a period of 10 days to fill in the necessary documents to obtain aid

Update 11/11 - 10:44 UTC:
- Joke reported that a new circle is showing from the higher areas of the island. She is now at the Naos mountain 150 meter above the Las Calmas sea.  If something important will be seen there, our audience will know it within minutes.

Earthquake-Report.com has just started 2 GOOGLE+ pages
- the first page will carry all Earthquake and Volcano information which can also be found in the website (sometimes of course excerpts only). This page is called Earthquake Report
- the second one will have "Volcano News only" - It is called Volcano Report
Why Google+ pages ?  We have been testing the capabilities of Google+ format for a while in personal accounts. Although it feels almost the same than the Facebook format, it gives us, publishers a lot better update capability. Our continuous changing titles and images are NOT updated in Facebook (the same title and pictures are always appear) but  are constantly refreshed in Google+. An important improvement for us.
We will of course continue to feed our Facebook and Twitter accounts too.
All people having a Google+ account or those who will be making one in the future are invited to follow one of these pages.  Armand Vervaeck, Founder Earthquake-Report.com

Data Update 11/11 - 08:44 UTC:
- The 4.6 magnitude earthquake was also felt on the islands of La Palma and Tenerife
- we want to stress (before we get a number of questions about it) that this earthquake will have NO relation with the volcanoes on La Palma and Tenerife.
- Joke just told me that she sees NO sea jacuzzi from her house in El Pinar (400 m above the Las Calmas sea). Later today she will move to the viewpoint @ the Naos mountain (where the official journalists are standing)
- Joke is not a journalist of course, she is an artist, and became our volunteer El Hierro eyes while commenting in this website on what she saw. Gradually Joke became our human webcam (she invented the word herself) and reported to the thousands of daily ER readers. Just as many of our readers, she became fascinated by the volcano she is living up the last 25 years.

Data Update 11/11 - 00:55 UTC:
- a magnitude 4.6 earthquake happened in the El Golfo bay at 00:20 November 11. The depth was 21 km. This is one of the strongest earthquakes on El Hierro so far.
The earthquake was felt as a light to moderate shaking. If confirmed at 4.6 by IGN, the Los Roquillos tunnel maybe closed again. The epicenter of the earthquake was in the coastal El Golfo bay area.

Data Update 10/11 - 23:16 UTC:
- Harmonic tremor became somewhat stronger again around noon and stayed like that for the rest of the day
- seismic energy seems to get stronger since the Las Calmas sea activity subsided
- A Felt earthquake occurred at 18:31 UTC. It had a magnitude of 3.5 at a depth of 21 km
- A total of 44 earthquakes occurred today (less than the prior days, but they picked up in the afternoon again).

Harmonic tremor on November 10 2011 - Image courtesy IGN

Update 10/11 - 16:16 UTC:
- Joke has just reported "NO activity on the Las Calmas sea".
- Harmonic tremor is unstable but not saturated anymore.
- volcanic earthquakes continue but only 17 since midnight, far less than the preceding days.
- Current parameters are showing the weakest activity since a couple of weeks

Update 10/11 - 16:03 UTC:
- The levels of CO² and H2S have been decreasing steadily since the vent / jacuzzi activity subsided 2 days ago
- Pevolca has also reported that Ph levels in the eruptive stain water varied from 7.97 to 5.45 at a depth of 5 meter.

Update 10/11 - 13:49 UTC:
- Some of our readers have just asked us to make it clear that the HD-Webcam @ La Restinga (http://www.ilovesantacruz.es/newweb/camara-web-situada-en-la-restinga/2011/11/) shows only a still panorama picture.   Like we said already in our 13:42 update, El Hierro authorities are missing a great chance to promote the island. The webcam was promised to be functioning today, but ... it remains a promise only. Joke Volta did her best to get it done, but she is more used to the  "tomorrow" promise  on this otherwise so peaceful island.

Update 10/11 - 13:46 UTC:
- Joke Volta has requested at the El Pinar authority to install waste bins at the viewing point @ the montaña Naos as people are staying there for many hours and have their food and drinks with them, but no place to put the garbage . Her proposal was well received.

Update 10/11 - 13:42 UTC:
- Paulo Rivero, Canary Island President, has declared that the support of the Canary Island government for the evacuated and affected islanders will arrive in a few days (hopefully not like the webcam)
- The first components of the "wind farm" to be installed in the central part of El Hierro arrived on the island yesterday. 70 parts of the wind turbines left Germany on October 27. The unloading operation needed 100-ton cranes and trailers with a length of 40 meter, this due to the large size of the material. The blades are 35 meters long.
- Eruption anniversary : The volcano has been active since October 10, that's the first candle to blow out

Update 10/11 - 13:08 UTC:
- The French press starts to arrive at El Hierro ... but the activity has gone ...
- Joke reports that there is ZERO to see at the moment
- The Guardia Civil - Involcan helicopter has just made his daily overflight (Involcan is taking gas samples above the vents - see graph below) and came to greet the journalists at the viewing point
- At 11:30 the La Restinga city council met in El Pinar to discuss solutions how to survive this crisis
- Only 6 people are currently in La Restinga
- and the webcam ... he is till showing the image from yesterday. We hope that the La Restinga councel will do something about it - this is truly bad publicity for El Hierro

Data Update 10/11 - 11:13 UTC:
- Harmonic tremor and frequency are showing still activity but with a limited number of bursts.
- Since midnight UTC the earthquake activity can be called "weak" compared to prior days. Only 8 quakes with magnitudes 1.5 or higher.
- Max. magnitude since midnight : 2.7.
- Shallowest earthquake being at a depth of 18 km.

Update 10/11 - 10:55 UTC:
Joke just arrived at Montaña Naos (Naos mountain) a viewpoint area 150 meter above sea level.  She reports that a faint eruption zone is forming again, but without bubbles in the middle like we have seen the prior days.

Update 10/11 - 09:15 UTC:
The picture below was uploaded by Involcan (Instituto Volcanologico de Canarias) and shows the relation in between various parameters like : nr of volcanic earthquakes, the date when the eruption started and the CO² emitted before and after the jacuzzi or eruption action. The last 2 days are not included, so the graph ends with the strongest eruption phase explaining why the CO² values are that high.  Clicking on the image will result in a larger picture.

Image courtesy Involcan Canary Islands

Update 09/11 - 23:10 UTC:
La Restinga webcam news ! : We know that the webcam stories are more disappointments than successes, but more good news is in the making. Today's HD-La Restinga webcam was a trial with a fixed picture. The EFE correspondent and Mr. Atilano have told Joke Volta that from tomorrow on a capacity of 90,000 people  can be handled.

Update 09/11 - 23:05 UTC:
2 volcanic earthquakes have been felt by the people tonight. The first at 18:17 and the second, a 3.1 earthquake at 18:41.

Update 09/11 - 22:00 UTC:
Picture made by the helicopter crew of the Guardian Civil - Involcan. It almost looks like a volcano but it is only the coloring of the water.

Image La Restinga Jacuzzi taken by de crew of the Guardia Civil and Involcan

Update 09/11 - 20:00 UTC:
The webcam at La Restinga is (sometimes) online again, ONLY it is image instead of a webcam. It is clearly written Camera Web !, and a picture is not a Camera Web. Joke told me this afternoon that the software still had to be installed. Lets give it a chance tomorrow, otherwise it will be again a hoax ! This afternoon when it went live, it looked like a real image with the sun in the right direction etc. If they continue to use the current picture, they have to ERASE immediately the Camera Web written on top of it !

Update 09/11 - 18:00 UTC:
Pevolca has closed the beaches of Puerto Naos and Tacorón because of the risk of toxic gases emitted by the volcano. The decision has been taken after that a technician of IGN was mildly intoxicated while taking samples in the area on Tuesday. All other imposed measures remain unchanged. (ER = this is simply a precautionary measure - the activity of the jacuzzi s and the erupted material was never so high than yesterday. It was unwise of the technician to walk along the beach without a gas mask)

Update 09/11 - 17:30 UTC:
Canaria7 reports on a disagreement in between the CSIC scientists (Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Científicas) and the IGN  scientists (Instituto Geografico Nacional) .  The relations were initially very cordial, but started to deteriorate when both parties were arguing about the risk for the El Golfo and the La Restinga area. Following Canarias7 CSIC does not believe in the risk of an eruption near La Restinga anymore and want to focus the research in the El Golfo area.  Link to the Canarias7 article.

Update 09/11 - 16:29 UTC:
The "astonishing view" was seemingly short lived because we cannot reach the image anymore (unfortunately after closing our screen). We were at least one of the lucky ones who had a glimpse of it ... So, please keep trying. It's worth it.

Update @ 16:00 UTC:
Webcam lovers : enjoy the OUTSTANDING WEBCAM image @ La Restinga.
This is what Joke was talking about this morning. Please keep in mind that as the sun goes down in the west, back light maybe worsening the view.  A big thank you to Maria Lopez who attracted our attention to the webcam via Facebook.
UPDATE 20: 00 UTC : The webcam at La Restinga is (sometimes) online again, ONLY it is image instead of a webcam. It is clearly written Camera Web !, and a picture is not a Camera Web. Joke told me this afternoon that the software still had to be installed. Lets give it a chance tomorrow, otherwise it will be again a hoax ! This afternoon when it went live, it looked like a real image with the sun in the right direction etc. If they continue to use the current picture, they have to ERASE immediately the Camera Web written on top of it !

Click on the image to go to the I LOVE EL HIERRO webcam

Update 09/11 - 15:09 UTC :
Helicopter video footage from yesterday November 8 as published by Diario El Hierro (video recorded by the Cabildo El Hierro)

Update 09/11 - 14:01 UTC :
- Joke has just reported that she had spoken to the technicians and the Cabildo (authorities).  The technicians told her that the installation of the webcam was almost finished and that only the software had to be configured. The least that we can say is that this news is hopeful !
- Pevolca did meet at noon and as could be expected nothing new has been decided

Update 09/11 - 13:04 UTC :
The Rámon Margalef has been throwing a buoy near the eruption vent yesterday. The ship is now circling the area. What the ship is doing know can be called a calculated risk. We have to admit that the ship is doing great work in continuous sampling of the emitted gases and the water (he has been observed many times at the edge of the stain the last couple of days). As Patrick Allard was telling in this article before, the composition of the gases is predominant in calculating the risk for the population.
- El Pinar webcam is live again, but it is hard to see any detail in the sea due to the back-light

Update 09/11 - 12:41 UTC :
Picked up from the comments made below (Name and address known @ ER)
Cabildo de El Hierro and Telefonica are installing 2 webcams in La Restinga to enable people to follow LIVE the eruption events.
Cabildo de El Hierro y Telefónica ya están instalando 2 webcam en La Restinga para el seguimiento en directo del fenómeno eruptivo Twitter
If this message is confirmed, this is really good news, as Telefonica is the main telecommunications company in Spain and is maybe the only instance who is able to guarantee huge amounts of traffic.

Very Important Update 09/11 - 12:22 UTC :
- Scientists in La Restinga and Guardia Civil who is currently flying over the earlier jacuzzi location  have reported that the vent has probably closed completely. The activity has completely stopped at the moment. The Rámon Margalef Oceanographic ship is now close to the eruption vent is is probably taking gas samples and water samples.
We expect to publish images soon.
The closure of erupting vents is a normal phase in this kind of activity. This does not mean that the volcano activity is completely over. If the volcano continues in the same pattern, the seismic activity may getting stronger again as the magma trying to find his way to the surface has been blocked.

Some additional note on the person who gave his name to this Oceanographic ship

Dr. Rámon Margalef - image courtesy issha.org

The late Dr. Rámon Margalef was a well known prominent catalan scientist that taught Ecology in the Univertisy of Barcelona. Those who have had the opportunity to hear his lessons are very proud of that and I'm sure that we all will be coincident that his memory must be preserved.
Margalef, unquestionably one of the most important scientists that Spain has produced, worked at the Institute of Applied Biology (1946-1951), and at the Fisheries Research Institute, which he directed during 1966-1967. He created the Department of Ecology of the University of Barcelona, from where he trained a huge number of ecologists, limnologists and oceanographers. In 1967 he became Spain's first professor of ecology.
(Source Wikipedia and Frederic Villamayor Forcada - More information on Dr. Rámon Margalef here)

Update 09/11 - 11:30 UTC :
- There is a slowdown of the activity. A lot of pumice, but the activity active seaspots have subsided almost completely. Joke is now looking at the Las Calmas sea at the Montaña Naos (the cliff 150 meter above the Las Calmas sea).
- The world is blind again ! The El Pinar webcam (see picture below) turned black.
- The owner of the La Restinga webcam is still working on a solution involving the authorities and Telefonica. Why do we have a bad feeling about this ...

Data Update 09/11 - 11:20 UTC :
- 18 M+1.5 earthquakes occurred since midnight today
- strongest earthquake had a magnitude of 3.0 and occurred at 04:15 NW of Frontera.
- seismic activity is almost unchanged for many days now, the depths are still within the 17 to 23 km range and almost all epicenters are in the El Golfo bay.

Update 09/11 - 10:41 UTC :
We had to cut a part of this page and called it Part 9 (04/11-06/11). The page was simply getting too long. We have maintained a few important elements in the lower part of this article.

Update 09/11 - 09:00 UTC :
Patrick Allard comment on the IGN rescaling issue of the harmonic  tremor scale :
I am convinced that IGN seismologists  rightly adjust the display of harmonic tremor simply to avoid full-scale  saturation and be able to watch at ongoing short-term amplitude  oscillations.
(more comments of Patrick Allard, see below)

Update 09/11 - 08:50 UTC - Streaming webcam active again:
The El Pinar webcam (poor quality webcam) is live again. Click here to see it.  The explosions can be seen from time to time (he says a white stain will appear). It may aid our readers in looking at the right area. (ER : this is another webcam than the HD La Restinga webcam with the many stories from yesterday)