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    Mount Etna’s eruption to impact air quality, visibility across southern Europe

    By Courtney Spamer, AccuWeather meteorologist
    March 02, 2017, 6:15:41 AM EST

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    The eruption of Mount Etna may affect air quality and visibility across parts of southern Europe into the end of the week.

    On Monday night, Etna, known as Europe's most active volcano, started to spew lava and ash into the air. Ash continued to rise through the atmosphere into Tuesday.

    Mount Etna is situated on the eastern coast of the Italian island of Sicily.

    As the upper-level winds grab the ash from the eruption, they will steer it away from Mount Etna, affecting conditions elsewhere.

    "Over the next several days, the ash will be swept northeastward across far southwestern Italy, which will see the most effects," said AccuWeather Meteorologist Tyler Roys.

    EtnaAshTues

    "Poor air quality will be a concern, as the ash can cause breathing issues, particularly for sensitive groups," Roys added.

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    The ash spewed across the upper levels of the atmosphere may dim the sunshine from Ionian Sea into the Balkans on Thursday and Friday.

    "Depending on how long the eruption lasts, the haze could be around for several days," said Roys.

    mount etna

    Mount Etna, Europe's most active volcano, spews lava during an eruption, near the Sicilian town of Catania, southern Italy, early Tuesday, Feb. 28, 2017. The eruption was not dangerous and the airport of Catania is still open and fully operating. (AP Photo/Salvatore Allegra)

    Although no flights are currently being impacted by the ash from Etna, any further eruptions could cause minor flight delays for those traveling across the Mediterranean Sea, especially near Mount Etna where the ash will be thickest.

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