Killer Tsunamis expected, if Tenerife Volcano Teide erupts!
Killer Earthquakes, life-threatening Tsunamis and Huge Death Toll expected When the Tenerife Volcano Teide erupts!
In 2017 it was estimated that the Tenerife island suffered as many as 40 earthquakes in a single 48 hour period. This increase in seismic activity drew the attention of the whole world - and that attention has not wavered since. Why? At some point in the next few years the Tenerife volcano Teide is going to erupt. When it does, it will bring more than just death and destruction to Tenerife – it will cause a chain of events that will spiral out of control, eventually affecting the entire western world.
We wanted to know exactly what would happen when the Teide explodes...and we're warning you; you won't like the answers.
What Will Happen If Teide Erupts?
Teide sits in the northern center of Tenerife, in close proximity to tourist destinations and large towns such as the famed Puerto De La Cruz. The islands themselves sit off the east coast of northern Africa, with no land between them and Spain, the UK and the US.
So, lend us your imagination, just for a moment...
You go on holiday to Tenerife and spend three days enjoying the beach, good wine and good food in the sun.
On the fourth day the sky darkens with ash so thick it becomes hard to breathe. The ground is shaking nearly constantly (more than 270 earthquakes struck in one week period of 2018). So almost as soon as you steady yourself from one quake another hits.
The earthquakes will get progressively worse as the eruption progresses. If you do not get to safety in the immediate vicinity of the island you will choke on the ash and die. If you do not remove yourself from the island you will be in the potential path of liquid magma (with an average temperature of 1000 degrees celcious). That lava can do one of two things: it can spill out over the top of the mountain or it can (and most likely will) explode out of the top of the volcano and shower the whole island in flaming debris.
Fires will break out; fire-fighters will be too busy trying to control the flow of lava to do anything about them. Homes will burn. People will burn. Huge chunks of the island will be thrown into the sea. One Professor cited a potential buildup of groundwater leading to landslides in the event of a volcanic eruption. The whole north-western side of Tenerife might fall into the sea.
So... in all of that panic and devastation – when everywhere you look there is dying and blood and screaming and ashes – what do you do next? Hide in your hotel? Hope it doesn't get firebombed, that you won't choke on the toxic air like the people of Pompeii did? Will you wait to be rescued in absolute futility? You won't be able to get a boat because the tidal waves will be upwards of 100ft. You won't be able to get on a plane because volcanic ash particles trapped in jet engines turn to glass and bring down the flight... What do you do?
Unfortunately, we don't have the answer to that one. And that's just for those on the island... the decimation does not stop there.
The Whole North West of Tenerife Will Fall Into The Ocean
We know that the Teide has been named as a Decade Volcano; one of only 16 in the whole world. The term is used to identify volcanoes which merit scientific study and monitoring due to their close proximity to centers of population. The Teide was awarded this horrific honorary by the International Association of Volcanology and Chemistry of the Earth's Interior (IAVCEI). This title makes it one of the most dangerous volcanoes on the globe, and the affects would be felt in more areas than just Tenerife.
Teide is earth's third tallest volcano and is known to be active. The last eruption was in 1909 from the Santiago ridge, but the volcano erupts roughly once every 50-70 years... making it long overdue. However, a previous recorded eruption in 1706 (the Montanas Negras eruption) destroyed whole villages and most of the populace port of Garachico. It is estimated that future eruptions of the Teide volcano on Tenerife will result in Pyroclastic flow - a terrible mixture of gas, ash, lava and searing winds all traveling at fantastic speeds. Each of these on their own would be deadly... but combined it won't just cause the people of the island troubles.
When that large chunk of land in the North-West does eventually fall into the ocean – and it is only a matter of time before it does – it will send a Tsunami of water rippling out to drown the Canary islands almost completely... and it won't stop going until it hits land.
A Mammoth Mega Tsunami Will Strike the East Coast US, the eastern UK, Spain, Africa, and Drown The Canary Islands
The backlash from this mega tsunami will be horrendous. Waves in a Mega Tsunami can reach several hundred meters in height – with this particular landslide triggering 500 cubic km falling into the water from height, gaining a speed of about 220 mph as it crashes down. Such figures represent an initial tidal wave of up to 3000 feet in height. This water has to go somewhere... and when it does it will rush there at up to five hundred miles an hour.
The nearby islands will be simultaneously flooded, and that water will continue on, sending a huge surge echoing across the ocean. Scientists theorize that such a wall of water could work its way up to 12 miles inland, destroy coastal towns and cities and completely drown the lowlands. Given the flooding the southern UK already experiences, this will end in whole areas being completely wiped out.
The case will be worse on the north eastern coastline of Africa, with towns and cities being destroyed as the 3000 ft wave crashes into their shores at 500 mph. The force and speed will kill and consume all in its path. Low lying land masses will be completely drowned out. There will be more death and destruction.
The western coast of Spain and Portugal will be smacked hard with that same water. Portugal will be smashed – ancient landmarks will be destroyed forever. Whole parts of Portugal will now be underwater. The low lands of Spain will become flooded and food production will be affected. The majority of the Spanish population live in coastal regions. A high death toll is expected.
Along the entire eastern edge of the United States flood defences will fail. Ships will be wiped from the map and whole cargoes lost. If the Teide volcano erupts all of these states can expect to be hit by that tidal wave:
- South Carolina
- North Carolina
- Washington DC
- New Jersey
- New York
- Rhode Island
- New Hampshire
As well as suffering a deadly tsunami triggered by that wall of water the Bahamas, Cayman Islands and any other island groups in the Atlantic Ocean will be wiped out. All flights in the region will be grounded – and further afield as the ash cloud drifts. Rescue operations will be slow and ungainly because so many will need help. By the time the rest of the world recovers enough to check, we may just find that the Canary Islands are gone, entirely.
What is Being Done to Monitor the Potential Eruption?
Scientists from the National Geographic Institute were assigned to the area and have been monitoring the main volcano to the south of Teide, the Cumbre Vieja, since back in 2017. PH levels of soil and water have been taken, conductivity readings were made, gaseous activity and temperature readings were all monitored for activity. The aim of this was to try to make account for a raised period of activity throughout the region and try to gain some warning of when it might erupt again (The Indepedend, 2017).
It is thought that both Cumbre Veija and Teide National Park are overdue for eruptions. Scientists are working day and night to determine any differential factors that may indicate the arrival of the eruption. Nearly 1 million people live on Tenerife alone, with it being a popular tourist destination for many westerners. If the volcano erupts flights will have to be grounded... and every one of the Canary Islands will be in imminent danger.
You can stay up to date with earthquake monitoring in the area by visiting Volcano Discovery.
Is There A Disaster Action Plan in Place for A Teide Volcano Eruption?
There is no official action plan in place to evacuate or deal with this disaster. If you happen to be in the area when this ticking bomb goes off then you are in serious danger. The National Geographic do have some tips for you though. If a volcano erupts nearby you are to evacuate only when told by authorities to do so. You should stay indoors and only leave the house if you have to avoid debris or lava flow. If you do leave the house wear a face mask or cover your mouth with a damp cloth and ensure your arms legs, hands and feet are all protected.
In the event of the Teide erupting you have a dual threat to deal with. When that mega tsunami smashes into the other countries it will begin to recede. The current will pull it back to Tenerife and the island will be flooded after being molten ash for potentially whole days. It is this dual threat of both volcanic ash and torrential waters that make the Teide volcano on Tenerife a terrifying prospect.
If you happen to be in one of the areas affected by Tsunami as a result of the Teide eruption in Tenerife then hold on, we have tips for you as well. If you live in a coastal area you ought to familiarize yourself with flood warning systems, have an evacuation plan that leads to higher, more protected ground and know the weather to look out for. Off-shore earthquakes, news of a volcanic eruption in Tenerife, and rapidly increasing and decreasing water levels are all signs that a Tsunami could be on the way. Stay vigilant, stay safe... and don't be scared to enjoy your holiday; just plan it with caution.