The Stromboli volcano sent a river of lava into the sea

The Stromboli volcano sent a river of lava into the sea
Italy's Stromboli volcano spewed an ash cloud and sent a river of lava into the sea off the north coast of Sicily

Italy's Stromboli volcano has exploded in front of holidaymakers, spewing an ash cloud high into the air and sending a river of lava into the sea.

It comes almost two months after a massive eruption killed a man and forced terrified tourists to dive into the sea.

The summit of Stromboli - one of the most active volcanoes in the world - had already been closed due to an increase in activity this summer, including smaller explosions this week.



Londoner Nicole Bremner, who witnessed Wednesday's eruption, tweeted: "We were just at #Stromboli volcano watching the small eruptions. We left and then this giant eruption happened!"

The volcano is on a small island in the Tyrrhenian Sea off the north coast of Sicily in a region that is popular amongst British holidaymakers.

Stromboli "major explosion" happened just after 12pm local time, Volcano Discovery reported.

The website reported: "It was another massive explosion from the summit vents, producing an ash plume that rose probably a few km, ejected bombs to the upper slopes of the volcano and caused a pyroclastic flow that traveled down the Sciara into the sea.

"Activity had been very high during the past weeks and the summit area was already closed, which hopefully prevented any injuries or worse.

"From webcam images, nothing very unusual could be detected in the minutes before, just a relatively strong (but not unusual) eruption from a vent in the northeastern crater at 11:55 local time."

Holidaymakers gathered as the Stromboli volcano erupts and sends an ash cloud into the sky

Holidaymakers gathered as the Stromboli volcano erupts and sends an ash cloud into the sky
Some witnesses estimated that Wednesday's eruption was stronger than the one on July 3, Ansa reported.

In that explosion, a male hiker was killed by a falling rock, several people were injured and terrified holidaymakers ran for their lives or jumped into the sea.