Home NEWS Hawaii volcano eruption: Explosive eruption at Kilauea – TAKE SHELTER NOW | World | News

Hawaii volcano eruption: Explosive eruption at Kilauea – TAKE SHELTER NOW | World | News

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The United States Geographical Survey said there is an order to shelter in place.

Kilauea has erupted from its summit, sending a dusty plume of ash about 30,000 feet into the sky.

The USGS has alerted locals to evacuate the area, as giant rocks are sent flying into the air.

Hawaii Volcano Observatory officials confirmed that there was an explosive eruption at around 4:15 a.m. this morning, but they still have yet to assess whether it was a steam-driven explosion that had been previously predicted in the area. 

Kilauea volcano eruption latest

The Hawaii County Civil Defense Agency said: “This is a Civil Defense Message for May 17 at 5am. Hawaii Volcano Observatory reports that an Explosive Eruption at Kilauea’s summit has occurred. The resulting ash plume will cover the surrounding area. The wind will carry the plume towards the south-east. You should shelter in place if you are in the path of the ash plume. Driving conditions may be dangerous so if you are driving, pull off the road and wait until visibility improves.”

The area southeast of Kilauea volcano’s summit is in a rural, remote part of Hawaii Island on its eastern edge, far from any major resort areas. The closest resorts, in Kona and the Kohala Coast, are more than 100 miles away on the west side of the island.

The U.S. Geological Survey posted webcam footage of an ash plume billowing from the Kilauea’s summit and a plume of ash from an observation tower.

The volcano has been threatening to erupt ever since an earthquake shattered the crater floor 14 days ago. 

On Wednesday, scientists from USGS had found two-foot-wide rocks that had been hurled from the summit of Kilauea, spread out from the volcano a few hundred yards from Halemaumau.

The latest volcanic activity follows a spate of earthquakes that sent a large ash cloud spiraling up into the sky. 

Dramatic images showed local Hawaiian’s taking photos as the gas spread.

Warnings that this ash could be toxic to humans prompted the USGS and the Hawaiian Civil Defense agency to issue a red alert, warning locals to seek shelter. 

More than 20 fissures had opened up in the surrounding region of Puna, particularly in the Leilani Districts, where 1,700 residents were forced to evacuate last week. 

More than 10,000 residents have so far been displaced, but today’s eruption could force many more Hawaiian’s to the southeast of Kilauea to evacuate.

Michelle Coombs, of the Hawaiian Volcano Observatory, said the situation remains “very, very active and very dynamic.”

She added, “The potential for larger explosions is still there.”

Geologists from the USGS say the quakes are being caused by the ongoing deflation at the summit and as lava levels continue to decline.

As of Wednesday afternoon, the floor of the Kilauea caldera has dropped about 3 feet, prompting a warning that a major eruption could be imminent.

The strongest quake to hit the area was 4.4 in magnitude, registering as one of the strongest in the area. 

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