Active volcano erupts with hot lava for third time this year

A volcano on the French island of Réunion erupted on Dec. 7 until the morning of Dec. 8, following two eruptions this year in February and April. 

The Piton de la Fournaise, or “Peak of the Furnace,” is one of the world’s most active volcanoes. Though it regularly spews lava, it poses little danger because it’s located in the Indian ocean.

Footage showed the Piton de la Fournaise spewing hot orange-red lava. It shot up into the air while magma slowly dripped down the sides of the volcano.

Most of the lava was projected as high as 15 meters before being deposited into a fountain. Volcanologists who observe Piton de la Fournaise believe it has tentatively stopped erupting.

“The effusive eruption of the volcano stopped as a decrease of volcanic tremor and gas emissions have been recorded,” Volcano Discovery stated on Dec. 8. “These are generally observed when the quantity of gas available is exhausted and often synonymous with a decrease in surface activity.”

The activity isn’t anything new for the natural phenomenon. 

“It is in a phase of frequent but short-lived eruptions that start with lava fountains and produce large lava flows,” noted Volcano Discovery.

The Piton de la Fournaise is 530,000 years old and has had over 150 eruptions since the 17th century — 20 of which occurred in the last 10 years.

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