Hawaii volcano erupts from summit, sends huge plume into sky

Ceria Alfonso
May 18, 2018

The bill directs the U.S. Geological Survey to unify current volcano monitoring systems - including the Hawaiian Volcano Observatory, Alaska Volcano Observatory and the Cascades Volcano Observatory - into a single, connected system called the National Volcano Early Warning System.

Authorities evacuated people from around Kilauea's crater area and urged those in the vicinity of the volcano to take shelter.

Civil Defense advises residents to protect themselves from ash fallout as more emissions are expected. It caught sight of an explosive eruption on Thursday morning at Kilauea's summit.

Free N95 masks will be distributed as from 1 p.m.to 7 p.m.at Cooper Center in Volcano, Pahala Community Center, Na'alehu Community Center and at the Shipman Park Pavilion in Kea'au.

In Hawaii on Thursday, may 17, there was another eruption of Kilauea volcano.

"A lot of my friends from the mainland, they have been inundating me with, 'Are you OK?' A lot of them think we're (just) one island", she said.

Robert Hughes, who owns a bed and breakfast near the crater, said he's more concerned about the business he'll lose as a result of the volcano's activity.

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Geologists said the 4:15am explosion was likely to be the first in a series of steam-driven explosions last seen in 1924, rather than "the big one" that nervous residents had been fearing. 37 houses have been burned by lava coming out of volcanic fissures.

A powerful but short-lived explosion occurred at the summit of the Kilauea volcano on Hawaii's Big Island, producing a massive volcanic cloud, officials said.

Volcanic smog - known as "vog" - is now being emitted by the fissures, traveling toward populated areas and threatening residents with unsafe sulfur dioxide.

High levels of sulfur dioxide forcing more schools in the Puna area to close because of the air quality. "If it's red, it's get out of Dodge", she said. Hawaii's state volcanologist, Bruce Houghton, says that the current event appears to be a type of complex eruption that occurs only once every 50 to 80 years.

Residents in areas near the volcano told The Associated Press they experienced light amounts of ash accumulation following the eruption.

In Hilo 30 miles (48 kilometers) from the volcano, Pua'ena Ahn says he has experienced labored breathing, itchy, watery eyes and some skin irritation as ash plumes intensified in recent days.

The National Weather Service amended their earlier ashfall advisory to end at noon today instead of 8 a.m. Friday. Lisa Murkowski said in a statement after Thursday's vote.

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