Hawaii Volcano Could Have Explosive Eruption

Barack Obama

"This is the first of perhaps more events like that to come", said Tina Neal, the scientist-in-charge at the USGS Hawaiian Volcanoes Observatory. At that point, steam pressure builds then explodes. Now it looks as if it will devastate our old "Little Old Shack" in Hawaii. It may also shoot pebbles into the air several miles away, and dust areas up to 20 miles away with ash.

Contingency plans will be made to secure and evacuate area residents should lava intrusions cause elevated levels of hydrogen sulfide (H2S) or sulfur dioxide (SO2) to be released.

Exposure to vog can result in headaches, difficulty breathing, stinging eyes and sore throat, and it can induce asthma attacks, and aggravate preexisting respiratory illnesses.

Along with lava and volcanic ash spewing from the ground, fissures are emitting high levels of toxic Sulphur gases that react with oxygen, moisture and sunlight.

Like choking on rotten eggs, fumes.

"I hit my [asthma] pump three times this morning", resident Dan Kelly told Evans.

The semi-rural wooded area of Leilani Estates had become a magnet for newcomers to Hawaii's Big Island who were prepared to risk living near to an active volcano in return for more affordable housing.

The ongoing surge in volcanic activity on Hawaii's Big Island soon could cause a massive explosion from a volcano's summit, scientists and Hawaii officials warned Wednesday. The facility is located across the highway from where lava has been erupting in Leilani Estates.

The Puna Geothermal Venture plant has about 50,000 gallons (189,270 liters) of pentane on site but he expected this would all be removed by the end of the day Thursday.

Officials warn that lava could flow downhill and burn areas that don't now face danger and that toxic volcanic gas could kill people, especially the elderly and those with breathing problems.

Authorities previously ordered almost 2,000 residents to leave the neighborhoods in and around the vents in the mostly rural district of Puna. There was no sign of holdouts in Lanipuna afterward, he said.

Fourteen fissures have opened since Kilauea's vents started spraying fountains of lava up to 90 meters into the air and about 42 hectares of land have been covered with lava.

It's those gases that have forced about 2,000 people to flee their homes.

But the new vents prompted Hawaii County to issue a cellphone alert ordering stragglers in the Lanipuna Gardens area to get out immediately.

The Hawaiian Volcano Observatory measured a temperature of 103 degrees C (218 degrees F) at a crack in Leilani Estates on Wednesday.

Advancing lava covers the grass in Puna, Hawaii, U.S., May 6, 2018 in this still image obtain from social media video. Part of that is because in Hawaii if a home is destroyed by lava flow that's considered fire damage, and the losses and damages to all properties so far have been from lava flow, he said. (USGS) Kilauea lava flow seen in 1969.

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