County: Curfew Lifted West of Pomaikai

The National Weather Service reports high levels of vog and sulfur dioxide from the fissure system are moving north and wedging in the Saddle area, creating poor visibility on the roads.

Hawai`i County Civil Defense urges motorists to drive with caution.

The mandatory evacuation order continues for all areas of Leilani Estates, at Pomaikai Street and to the east.

As of Civil Defense’s 9 a.m. message, the curfew has been lifted west of Pomaikai and is open only to residents with official credentials.

Government Beach Road, between Kahakai Boulevard and Cinder Road, is open to Waa Waa and Papaya Farms Road only to residents with official credentials; there is no curfew.

Residents in these areas should heed warnings from Civil Defense officials and be prepared to evacuate with little notice.

Hawaiian Volcano Observatory reports that the vigorous eruption of lava continues from the lower East Rift Zone fissure system in the area of Leilani Estates.

Overnight, lava fountaining at Fissure 8 continue to reach heights of about 220 feet.

Geology and UAS crews observed no significant changes in the Fissure 8 flow field. HVO’s morning overflight revealed that there is no lava activity from the other fissures but Fissure 24 is incandescent and Fissures 24, 9, and 10 are fuming heavily.

Pele’s hair and other lightweight volcanic glass from high fountaining of Fissure 8 are falling downwind of the fissure and accumulating on the ground within Leilani Estates. High winds may waft lighter particles to greater distances. Residents are urged to minimize exposure to these volcanic particles, which can cause skin and eye irritation similar to volcanic ash.

HVO field crews are on site tracking the fountains, lava flows, and spattering from Fissure 8 as conditions allow and are reporting information to Hawaii County Civil Defense. Observations are also collected on a daily basis from cracks in the area of Highway 130; no changes in temperature, crack width, or gas emissions have been noted.

HVO officials say that the ocean entry is a hazardous area. Venturing too close to an ocean entry on land or the ocean exposes you to flying debris from sudden explosive interaction between lava and water. Also, the lava delta is unstable because it is built on unconsolidated lava fragments and sand. This loose material can easily be eroded away by surf, causing the new land to become unsupported and slide into the sea. Additionally, the interaction of lava with the ocean creates “laze”, a corrosive seawater plume laden with hydrochloric acid and fine volcanic particles that can irritate the skin, eyes, and lungs.

Magma continues to be supplied to the lower East Rift Zone. Seismicity remains relatively low in the area with numerous small magnitude earthquakes and low amplitude background tremor. Higher amplitude tremor is occasionally being recorded on seismic stations close to the ocean entry.

At 2:44 AM HST, a small explosion occurred at the summit of Kilauea. No weather radar observations of plume heights are possible, but satellite data suggest that any plume that might have been generated did not exceed 10,000 feet above sea level. Since the small explosion, seismic activity in the summit region has been low. Inward slumping of the rim and walls of Halema`uma`u continues in response to ongoing subsidence at the summit.

Sulfur dioxide emissions from the volcano’s summit, while lower than those recorded in early-mid May, remain high enough to impact air quality in downwind regions. Additional bursts of gas released with intermittent explosive activity are also transported downwind and may temporarily affect air quality as well.

Photo: Lava entering the ocean in the vicinity of Kapoho Bay is forming a lava delta, as seen from the air during this morning’s overflight at about 7 a.m. on June 7.