Mount Etna sends up massive smoke rings: No cause for alarm

Mt-Etna-Smoke-Rings Volcanologist says Mount Etna has emitted hundreds, and perhaps thousands, of the spectacular rings since Tuesday - Fabrizio Villa/Getty Images

Mathew 24:7 For nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom, and there will be famines and earthquakes in various places.

Important Takeaways:

  • Watch: Mount Etna puffs giant smoke rings in ‘extraordinary’ phenomenon
  • Mount Etna is one of a handful of volcanoes around the world that produces the rings, and does so prolifically, but the latest emissions are exceptional, scientists say.
  • “No volcano on earth produces so many rings of steam as Etna. We have known this for quite some time. But now it is beating all previous records,” said Boris Behncke, a volcanologist at the National Institute of Geophysics and Volcanology of Catania. He has been studying the volcano and living close to it for the past 25 years.
  • He said that on late Tuesday a small vent opened on the north-east edge of the south-east crater, which had emitted puffs of incandescent gas.
  • The following morning, it became clear that these puffs were creating “an impressive quantity” of vortex rings, he said.
  • Experts say the unusual rings are harmless and aren’t necessarily a prelude to an imminent eruption.

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