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Stromboli volcano erupts for second time in two months

A volcano on the Italian island of Stomboli has erupted for the second time in two months, sending plumes of smoke into the sky.

A similar eruption in July killed an Italian hiker and sent tourists fleeing into the sea.

Following the latest blast, which happened just after midday on Wednesday, there were some small fires reported but no immediate reports of any injuries.

Image: The blast on the Italian island of Stromboli is the second in two months
A smoke from the volcano eruption rises over Srtomboli, Italy August 28, 2019 in this picture obtained from social media. Nicole Bremner/via REUTERS ATTENTION EDITORS - THIS IMAGE HAS BEEN SUPPLIED BY A THIRD PARTY. MANDATORY CREDIT.
Image: The volcanic explosion occurred just after midday Wednesday. Pic: Nicole Bremner

Images on social media showed a large cloud filling the sky, with helicopters deployed to drop water on the fires left by lava.

British tourists have described witnessing the eruption.

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Nicole Bremner, from London, was visiting the island after spending six weeks sailing around the Mediterranean, and said she had seen mild eruptions before the big blast.

"We had anchored off Stromboli last night after watching the eruptions for a few hours. We went back this morning and watched another, then left to a nearby small island," she said.

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"We had just dropped the anchor and were about to go swimming when my partner noticed a larger plume of smoke than usual.

"I started filming and then we heard the large blast and I filmed the plume. We then headed back over to see if we could help with any evacuations."

She added: "We have spoken to the coast guard and they didn't move us on and allowed us to continue sailing around but asked us to move in closer to the shore due to the planes dropping water."

The National Institute of Geophysics and Volcanology said a strong volcanic explosion just after midday on Wednesday sent flaming lava rolling down the volcano's slopes to the edge of the sea.

Residents said the coast guard had told them there was no risk of a tsunami.

Smoke rises from a volcano on the island of Stromboli after an explosion in Stromboli, Italy, in this handout picture released on August 28, 2019. Vigili del Fuoco/Handout via REUTERS
Image: The coast guard said there was no risk of a tsunami

One witness said: "Locals seem relieved. They say it was inevitable after the 3 July explosion."

President of the Sicily region, Nello Musumeci, said the docking of private boats in the island had been suspended for a few hours on Wednesday as a precaution.

"Luckily there were no damages to people and properties," Mr Musumeci said on Facebook.

Stromboli is one of the longest continuously active volcanoes in the world and has been erupting for about 2,000 years. However, the vast majority are mild explosions which are not usually hazardous.

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