EuropeTourists evacuated as Stromboli stirs.

Death in the Med as volcano erupts

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Stromboli 190704
A local priest described the eruption as “like being in hell”. Photo Credit: MaRabelo/GettyImages

The Italian coastguard used helicopters to airlift tourists to the mainland as molten rocks spewed from the summit of the volcano on the small Mediterranean island.

Tourists have been evacuated from the Italian resort island of Stromboli after a volcanic eruption killed one tourist and seriously injured another.

The Italian coastguard used helicopters to airlift tourists to the mainland as molten rocks spewed from the summit of the volcano on the small Mediterranean island.

Italian media reported that some tourists had fled into the sea after the eruption, while others had barricaded themselves into homes.

“It was like being in hell because of the rain of fire coming from the sky,” local priest Giovanni Longo was quoted as saying.

Italy’s National Institute of Geophysics and Volcanology (INGV) said there were two huge explosions on the volcano’s crater on Wednesday.

The explosions created a two-kilometre high plume of smoke and a fountain of lava which gushed and spilled “from all the active mouths of the crater terrace”, the INGV said.

Stromboli is known as the "Lighthouse of the Mediterranean" and has a population of around 500. The last major eruption was in 2002, when a blast destroyed local buildings and piers.


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