A river of lava spewing from the foot of Hawaii's Kilauea Volcano swallowed about three dozen more homes on the Big Island during a weekend of destruction that brought to almost 120 the number of dwellings devoured since last month, officials said on Monday.
A river of lava spewing from the foot of Hawaii's Kilauea Volcano swallowed about three dozen more homes on the Big Island during a weekend of destruction that brought to almost 120 the number of dwellings devoured as of June 4, 2018.
"The lava breakout on the north side of the Kapoho cinder pits continues to be stalled southeast of the intersection of Railroad Avenue and Cinder Road", the USGS Hawaiian Volcano Observatory reports. Officials warned residents in the area to be ready to evacuate with little notice.
Lava edged towards a geothermal power plant on Tuesday after destroying an old warehouse near the facility, County of Hawaii Civil Defense said.
That's a lot of lava, but flow volumes can be extraordinarily hard to measure, the USGS said.
"We don't have an estimate yet, but safe to say that hundreds of homes were lost in Kapoho Beach Lots and Vacationland last night", said Janet Snyder, a spokeswoman for Hawaii County.
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Authorities will attempt to airlift individuals out of the neighborhood if the lava spreads further. Some said they were staying because they had nowhere else to go, officials said.
For those whose homes have been unscathed, the prolonged strain of uncertainty has grown increasingly hard.
While most of the fissures that opened up last month are now inactive, Fissure 8 is busy, pushing lava fountains 75 metres (250 feet) into the sky at temperatures of up to 1115°C (2040°F). The destruction is the largest number of destroyed homes since the eruption began last month.
"It's possible that new explosions will blast through the rubble at the bottom of the vent".
Scientists are unsure whether the blockage will eventually end eruptions at the summit or lead to a buildup of pressure that could cause a much bigger explosion.