Eruption of Mount Etna, a new eruptive episode began March 15, 2017 from the Southeast Crater. After last eruption (27 February-1 March 2017) it was observed a weak explosive activity that with the passing day has gradually intensified. During the current eruption a lava overflow occured by the south side of the crater. The intensification of the eruptive phenomenon and volcanic tremors have led to almost a constant Strombolian explosions that generated small amounts of volcanic ash, quickly dispersed into the atmosphere.
The lava flow had reached the base of the cone and was slowly expanding on the flat ground towards south. Late in the afternoon of March 15, the lava flow continued to advance overlapping the previous layer. The pick of the activity took place in the afternoon and continued at evening with a gradual decrease in eruptive amplitude and volcanic tremor.
During the eruption of March 16, an explosion phreatic-magmatic occurred to the western edge of the Valle del Bove, at about 2700 meters of altitude. The front of the lava flow move at a temperature higher than 1000 degrees centigrade in an area covered with snow, the contact with the molten lava tends to dissolve thw snow creating puddles of water under the lava flow, which vaporize causing phreatic-magmatic explosions. In this explosive phenomenon was also involved a volcanologist of the National Institute of Geophysics and Volcanology - Osservatorio Etneo (INGV-OE), Boris Behncke, who suffered minor bruises.
The explosive activity and lava flow have gradually weakened, ending in the early hours of Monday, March 20, 2017.