The towns of Fornazzo and Saint-Alfio are being threatened with extinction. Molten lava flowing from?
GV & CU Lava creeping down mountain (3 shots)
SV & GV Service being held in roadside with lava in B/G (4 shots)
GV & SV People evacuating houses (3 shots)
SV PAN Car with belongings loaded on roof along road
Initials SGM/0338 SGM/0355
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Background: The towns of Fornazzo and Saint-Alfio are being threatened with extinction. Molten lava flowing from Europe's largest volcano, Mount Etna has already destroyed several houses and villages scattered on the slopes above Fornazzo.
This latest lava flow started 11 days ago, after Mount Etna had already been in the throes of its most vigorous eruption since World War Two for a month. The eruptions have continued without a break for more than 40 days.
Lava streams have passed within a half a mile (1 kilometre) of Fornazzo, but the villagers fear that a new stream could destroy their village. On Monday, while some of the people were busy removing the last of their belongings from their threatened homes, most of the villagers took part in an outdoor church service -- within sight of the relentless lava flow.
SYNOPSIS: After eleven days, molten lava continues to flow from Europe's largest volcano, Mount Etna. Of immediate concern, is the safety of the villagers in the towns of Fornazzo and Sant-Alfio. Although lava streams have passed within a half a mile of Fornazzo, people there fear that a new flow could destroy their town. This latest threat began as Mount Etna was in the throes of its most vigorous eruption since World War Two.
As in times past when the volcano threatened the village,the towns-people held an outdoor church service. They prayed that the lava would continue to spare their village. Below Fornazzo, the villagers of Sant-Alfio are planning to carry relics of their saints to the edge of the lava, praying that the flow will turn aside as it did in 1928.
Many of the villagers in both towns are busy removing their belongings from their threatened homes. Experts on the mountain reported no slackening in the lava flow at its source, or of eruptions higher up he volcano. The lava flow is reported to be less than two miles from Sant-Alfio, and forecasts are that it could reach the town some time n Tuesday. Authorities are still hoping that it will stop or turn aside, thus missing the village.