Published: Mon, May 07, 2018
Sci-tech | By Lila Blake

Hawaii's Kilauea volcano eruption destroys 26 homes

Hawaii's Kilauea volcano eruption destroys 26 homes

The US Geological Service (USGS) warned on Saturday that additional fissure outbreaks with spatter and lava flows were likely, although the locations could not be predicted with a high degree of certainty.

The lava lake at Kilauea's summit crater dropped significantly, suggesting the magma was moving eastward toward Puna, a mostly rural district of forests, papaya farms and lava fields left by past eruptions.

The region's most active volcano has destroyed at least 31 homes since it started spewing hot lava and toxic gases into residential areas since last Thursday, the Hawaii County Civil Defence Agency confirmed.

Some people were briefly allowed back into their homes to retrieve pets and essential documents. A 5.7-magnitude tremor hit the island earlier on Friday.

The Kilauea volcano is erupting on the Big Island of Hawaii, forcing the evacuation of 1700 people.

Big Island civil defense officials also said Sunday morning two new fissures, or vents where lava has broken through the ground, have emerged in the Leilani Estates subdivision.

"All agencies have been alerted about the possibility of an eruption", Magno said.

After this incident, Community Centers were opened for the people, where continuous help was being provided. "The gases are still high".

Timothy Trun was among a dozen who evacuated from his farm Thursday as he and others were about to sit down to a goodbye dinner for a friend. "There's a couple cracks that's close by that still have steam coming out", Marzo told CNN affiliate KHON. "That methane gas can get trapped in pockets beneath lava flows or underground, and explode out violently, throwing rocks and debris in every direction", Stovall said. It was pretty much our dream home that we've been looking for all this time.

"If we lose our farm, we don't know where we're going to go".

"Those remaining in Leilani and Lanipuna Gardens and along Pohoiki Road need to prepare to leave because if the winds change, you could be gassed", Hawaii County Council member Eileen O'Hara said in a Facebook post.

Kilauea has been continuously erupting since 1983 and is one of five volcanoes that make up the Big Island.

The Hawaii Fire Department reported "extremely high levels of risky Sulfur Dioxide gas" in the evacuation area, according to the Hawaii Country Civil Defence Agency.

"I urge residents in Leilani Estates and the surrounding areas to follow instructions".

Breathing large amounts of sulfur dioxide could result in burning of the nose and throat and breathing difficulties, the agency says.

The volcanologist declared: "The gases can cause quite a bit of respiratory distress as well as irritation of the eyes especially if people already have respiratory issues like asthma". "You can recover from it, but they went home with headaches and so forth, but that's part of the exposure". "I have also activated the Hawai'i National Guard to support county emergency response teams with evacuations and security".

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