Hawaii‘s Kilauea Volcano Erupts; 30,000-Feet Plume of Ash Sighted

Hawaii‘s Kilauea Volcano Erupts; 30,000-Feet Plume of Ash Sighted

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Sign up By , Christian Post Contributor | May 17, 2018 10:37 PM

Hawaii‘s Kilauea volcano has erupted again on Thursday, May 17, early in the morning. This new eruption has launched a thick gray plume of ash and dust towering about 30,000 feet or around 9.1 kilometers into the sky, followed by a rain of dust and small rocks on a nearby town.

The United States Geological Survey has posted on social media , shortly after the eruption went off. At 5 a.m. local time, the start of the plume of ash and dust can be already seen in a photo captured by a webcam in the now-unmanned Hawaiian Volcano Observatory, and it shows ash and small rocks raining down on the trees nearby.

Twitter/United States Geological SurveyWebcam image from HVO Observation Tower of ash plume from this morning‘s explosive eruption at Kīlauea Volcano‘s summit, as captured by a webcam installed by the United States Geological Survey.

The county of Hawaii has issued a  for the explosion, detailing new policies for those who are in Halemaumau and nearby areas.

“The Hawaiian Volcano Observatory (HVO) has advised of an explosive eruption at Kilauea summit that occurred at 4:17 in the morning. The eruption was short-lived with trace amounts of ashfall. A sizeable ash plume was generated and may have affected surrounding areas,” the report read.

The advisory has also emphasized new policies for the safety of Hawaii residents, as the update pointed out that for most of the people on the islands, the main danger is the ash fallout. Hawaiian residents should make it a priority to defend themselves and their children or pets from the ash and dust that are now expected to heavily fall about 30 miles around the eruption.

Those at home are encouraged to stay indoors with all the windows closed. They are also advised to tune in to radio for the latest updates from authorities. Likewise, those who have to go on the road are advised to keep their car windows rolled up as well. Driving is not recommended as ash fallout may result to poor driving conditions, ranging from impaired visibility to the dust and small rocks making the roads more slippery than usual.

Twitter/United States Geological SurveyScreen shot of the ash plume at the Kīlauea Volcano summit, taken from a Mauna Loa webcam by the United States Geological Survey on May 17, 2018.

Residents are also advised to wait for hazardous ashfall to pass before driving or inspecting their home for damage. Masks for family members are advised as well, but residents near fissures should remember that cloth masks, like those now being distributed for free at certain community centers in the area, will not protect them from dangerous gases and vapors.

The explosion that happened shortly after 4 a.m. in the morning marked the peak of two weeks of volcanic activity that had already sent lava flows into populated areas, destroying at least 26 homes, .

Even though the eruption sent a mile-high plume of ash into the sky, the event itself only lasted a few minutes, in all likelihood, according to Mike Poland of the US Geological Survey. Ashfall is expected to be minimal after the plume dissipates as well.

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