The Kilauea volcano in Hawaii explodes spectacularly, prompting the USGS to issue a CODE RED alert.
The USGS Hawaiian Volcano Observatory has issued a warning about the erupting KILAUEA volcano in Hawaii (HVO).
The eruption started around 3.20 p.m. HST (2.20 a.m. BST) and is centered around the Halemaumau crater. As a result, the HVO has raised its alert level from ‘Watch’ to ‘Warning,’ while any eruption-related threats are reviewed.
The US Geographical Survey has similarly altered its code from ‘Orange’ to ‘Red.’
This means an eruption is happening or is about to happen, with “large volcanic ash emissions into the atmosphere.”
“The early phases of eruptions are dynamic and uncertain,” the HVO warned in a statement.
“HVO continues to keep a close eye on the volcano and will issue further updates if there are any noteworthy developments.”
“As the situation unfolds, HVO is in continual contact with Hawai’i Volcanoes National Park.”
“The eruption is presently taking place totally within Hawaii Volcanoes National Park’s closed region.
“HVO is in constant contact with the Hawai’i County Civil Defense Agency.”
Because the eruption is nowhere close to where people may drive or trek, Hawaii Volcanoes National Park remains open.
Colleagues reported seeing lava shine and splatter from Kilauea volcano’s summit crater, according to Jessica Ferracane, a park spokesperson.
“He observed that from Volcano House, which is at least 2 kilometers distant from the eruption site,” she added of one colleague.
“I imagine we’ll see a lovely radiance, and who knows what else.”
“At this time, the park is open and there are no road closures.”
Authorities saw an increase in ground swelling and earthquake activity before the eruption.
As a result, the volcano’s alert levels have been elevated.
The National Park Service issued a warning that the eruption could be harmful.
“Volcanic eruptions can be dangerous and change at any time,” they said.
“Avoid soil fissures and cliff edges by staying on defined pathways and overlooks. Do not enter any areas that are locked.
“Dangerous volcanic fumes are spewing out the crater, endangering everyone, particularly adults with heart or pulmonary disorders, newborns, young children, and pregnant women.”
In 2018, Kilauea erupted, destroying over 700 homes on the island of Hawaii.
Thousands of people were forced to leave as lava buried an area the size of Manhattan.
The Guardian reports that enough lava was ejected to fill 320,000 Olympic-sized swimming pools.
Kilauea had previously erupted seldom since 1983.
Occasionally, lava will flow. “Brinkwire News Summary.”