USGS raised threat level of Kileuea Volcano to RED WARNING

16 May, 2018, 11:24 | Author: Carlos George
  • Hawaii County map shows the proximity of the new breakout to Puna Geothermal Venture

The Hawaiian Civil Defence warned at 8:00pm BST (6am Hawaiian Standard Time) of fissure 20 opening in Lanipuna Gardens Subdivision northeast from fissure 19.

The USGS expects ash emission to vary depending on rockfalls and other changes within the vent, but has said activity "may become more explosive, increasing the intensity of ash production and producing ballistic projectiles near the vent".

This is what the volcano looked like this week, with a steady push of smoke and ash into the sky.

A 20th fissure releasing lava and gases has opened on Kilauea's aspect, state officers stated on Tuesday. On Monday, another fissure spewing lava and unhealthy gas opened up, and a crack in the Earth that emerged a day earlier was sending molten rock on a slow run for the ocean, officials said.

Risky volcanic air pollution called vog has been reported nearly 20 miles away from the summit. A major concern for emergency services is lava devastating roads that could lead locals away from danger. The possibility exists, however, that water may not be entering the crater, as feared, and gas and steam may be safely venting, scientists said.

Almost 20 fissures have opened since the Kilauea volcano started erupting 12 days ago.

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The ash threatened Ka'u district, which is about 30 miles south west of the volcano, whereas poisonous fuel added to the hazard going through residents, whose escape routes are threatened with closure due to lava flows, officers stated.

Nina Bersamina heeded warnings to evacuate, saying residents are at the mercy of Pele, the Hawaiian goddess of fire.

The U.S. Geological Survey raised the alert level to red in Hawaii after the Kilauea Volcano sent a plume thousands of feet into the air Tuesday. "The flow is moving generally east south east and as of this morning was about 1.2 miles above Highway 137".

Mass evacuations would be triggered if either highway is hit by lava, said Hawaii National Guard spokesman Jeff Hickman.

The American Red Cross said 500 people sought refuge in its shelters on Sunday night because of worsening volcanic activity.

"We're observing more or less continuous emission of ash now with intermittent, more energetic ash bursts or plumes", said Hawaiian Volcano Observatory (HVO) Deputy Scientist-In-Charge Steve Brantley on a conference call with reporters.

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