High Alert: Hawaii volcano update Hawaii STILL growing EACH DAY as Kilauea lava flows into the sea
HAWAII’S Kilauea volcano is still terrorising Big Island as it continues to spill lava into the ocean, adding to an already major new outcrop of land jutting out from the coast.
The Kilauea volcano on Hawaii’s Big Island has now entered into its second month of eruption as it pushes a river of viscous red lava into the ocean.
Until recently the volcano has shown little sign of change, with an established channel flowing from the summit down to the ocean.
About a mile of new land has formed as a result, the latest addition to Hawaii’s volcanic islands.
So far, there have been no deaths and few injuries reported as a result of the eruption, but more than 600 homes are thought to have been destroyed.
What has changed at Kilauea?
The latest update from the United States Geological Survey (USGS) reveals how the volcano is starting to change.
The now established channel of lava flowing down to the coast has now started to overflow and is threatening even more properties.
Overflows have so far been observed but none have been able to reach outside of the ‘flow field’ where lava has already been.
Fresh activity is now starting to go beyond this area, and a new neighbourhood is now under threat.
As the lava steadily makes its way out of the already established flow zone, it also continues to make its way through the Kapoho Bay area.
The already decimated Kapoho Bay is the scene of land expansion from the volcano, as lava flow heads towards the south of the island.
The Cinder Road area of Big Island is most immediately in danger, says Hawaii County Civil Defence, and residents have been advised they may need to evacuate.
However, the Civil Defence Agency has stated that there are no immediate threats from the fresh activity.
Instead, they advised that weather services have forecast wind and rain, raising chances of sulphur dioxide production, which can cause irritation.
Despite the newest overflowing activity from the eruption, the other avenues the lava flow has taken are seeing a hard crust form.
USGS states the lower part of the core lava channel has undergone “reorganisation” and is crusting over.
This is likely due to a new blockage formed in the morning of July 9, which has slowed down flowing lava in the area.
As a result, the plumes of laze gas – airborne particles known for causing irritation – have started to reduce significantly.
What has happened to the people of Big Island?
The residents affected by the path of Kilauea’s lava flow have been evacuated and are either staying with family or in emergency shelter.
Many who have lost their homes are now applying for help from the state and federal government.
Hawaii State Governor David Ige has requested crisis counselling, unemployment assistance, disaster legal services, and case management which will enable families to recover.
The Inland Revenue Service has also given those affected by the eruption a tax break while they are readjusting.