UPDATE: Seventeenth Fissure Erupts in Lower Puna

Updated at 7:15 p.m.

Hawaiian Volcano Observatory reports a new fissure, number 17, is opening up about 100 meters below fissure 16.  At this time, steam and lava spatter activity has started from this new fissure.

Minor spattering activity from fissure (16) is diminishing and no significant lava flow was issued from this area.

In addition, HVO has cautioned about the possibility of an explosive eruption at Halema’uma’u Crater due to the ongoing withdrawal of lava from Kilauea summit lake. This could generate dangerous debris very near the crater and ashfalls up to tens of miles downwind.

Updated at 12:30 p.m.: 

Hawaiian Volcano Observatory reports fissure 16 is venting lava spatter about a mile below the geothermal plant property and a mile west (or Kalapana side) of highway 132.

Highway 132 remains open.

No residences are affected at this time, and no lava flow has been generated.

Updated at 9:30 p.m.:

HVO reports that as of 9:10 a.m. no significant lava flow from this new fissure has been reported or observed, but conditions could change quickly.

Elevated earthquake activity and ground deformation continue and additional outbreaks in the area remain likely.

Deflationary tilt at the summit of the volcano continues and seismicity remains elevated. On Saturday morning, a steady, vigorous plume of steam and variable amounts of ash is rising from the Overlook vent.

Occasional rockfalls into the deep vent will produce intermittent pulses of slightly more vigorous ash emissions. Depending on wind conditions, dustings of ash may occur in the Kilauea summit area and downwind. More energetic ash emissions are possible if explosive activity commences.

This morning’s trade winds are carrying the plume and ash to the southwest of the Kilauea summit. Trade wind conditions are expected to continue according to current forecasts.

Original post published at 8:01 a.m.

Hawaiian Volcano Observatory reports volcanic activity in the lower East Rift Zone of Kīlauea Volcano continues.

As of Saturday morning at 6 a.m., none of the 15 fissure vents have produced any lava since Thursday.

Continuing earthquakes, ground deformation, and sulphur dioxide emissions mean additional outbreaks of lava are possible.

HVO officials say that an explosive eruption at Halema’uma’u Crater is possible.  This could generate ash plumes that may affect an area as far as 12 miles from the summit crater.

Due to the volcanic activity, the following are issued:

  • Residents of lower Puna between Kapoho and Kalapana, are advised to be on the alert in the event of possible gas emissions and volcanic eruption.  There may be little to no advance notice to evacuate, so take this time to prepare.
  • If you evacuate voluntarily, the Pahoa Community Center and Kea’au Community Center are open. Food will be provided and the shelters are pet-friendly.
  • Under Emergency Provisions, any looting or vandalism during an emergency is treated as a felony.
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