Mt Etna volcano: 3 shallow earthquakes M2.8-3.0 on the NE flank
So, 12. Aug 2012, 06:5906:59 AM | VON: T
Three significant shallow earthquakes (0-4 km depth) of magnitudes around 3 occurred this morning today on the NE flank of Etna volcano, W and SW of the town of Linguaglossa.
Location of the quakes this morning (the 2 quakes of M3.0 and 3.2 at 04:50 and 05:04 are nearly at the same spot and form one dot on the map)
The quakes are very near or on the Pernicana fault system (visible as the E-W to ENE-WSW escarpment NE and E of Etna's summit area) which controls the gravitational downwards movement and spreading (on the order of 1-2 cm/ year) of the eastern and southern flank sector of the volcano's edifice. This fault system is capable of "opening" fissures giving way to flank eruptions, in particular to activate the NE rift zone. This happened during the 2002-03 eruption, when rapid movements along this fault caused an W-E extension totaling more than 1 meter in places, extensive ground fracturing, and helped and probably triggered (or was triggered by?) the injection of a dike (magma) that erupted during the violent flank eruption end of Oct 2002.
It will be interesting to see if more quakes occur in the near future and if ground deformation is detected in this area. If so, this could be an early warning sign towards a possible new flank eruption on the NE rift.
Sun, 12 Aug 05:04 UTC M 3.2 / 2 km
Sun, 12 Aug 04:50 UTC M 3.0 / 0 km
Sun, 12 Aug 02:19 UTC M 2.8 / 4 km
Automatic list of earthquakes near Etna:
So, 12. Aug 2012, 00:34