Scientists: Explosive eruption risk rises for Hawaii volcano

by Garry Watts May 12, 2018, 4:23
Scientists: Explosive eruption risk rises for Hawaii volcano

New volcanic fissures or cracks opened up in the ground, allowing lava and toxic gases to escape into the surrounding residential areas, called Leilani Estates and Lanipuna Gardens.

Barbara Lozano, who lives inside a mile of the plant, mentioned she would have thought twice about shopping for her property if she had recognized the dangers. "We don't know what's going on underground". Communities round 2 miles (Three kilometers) away could also be showered by pea-size fragments or dusted with unhazardous ash, mentioned Tina Neal, scientist-in-charge on the Hawaii Volcano Observatory. Most of the remainder of the Big Island is unaffected for now, as are the other Hawaiian Islands. The governor of Hawaii has declared a local state of emergency near the volcano after it erupted following a 5.0-magnitude quake, forcing the evacuation of almost 1,700 residents.

No one lives in the immediate area of the summit.

At the summit of Kilauea Volcano, deflationary tilt continues and quake frequency remains elevated. She says that while there is not now an active volcano in California, another eruption is inevitable. More than a dozen fissures oozing lava have opened in the ground.

What could happen is not an eruption of volcanic gases but mostly trapped steam from flash-heated groundwater released like in a kitchen pressure cooker, with rocks, said volcanologist Janine Krippner of Concord University in West Virginia.

The USGS reports that similar explosions are likely to happen again, especially after magma migrates into the rift zones on the volcano's flanks, which seems to be occurring now.

Some critics have suggested that the state encouraged more people to build in vulnerable areas when it created HPIA. Joe Kent, vice president of research at the Grassroot Institute of Hawaii, wrote this week that "if the state had stayed out of the situation, probably fewer families would have built in the area, and today there might be less housing destruction".

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"Walking in acid rain, or even swimming in a lake affected by acid rain, is no more risky to humans than walking in normal rain or swimming in non-acidic lakes", the EPA says.

"The recent scenarios have been developed using all the current techniques, data and knowledge of the get the best idea of how a volcanic eruption in Auckland might impact on our society", Dr Lindsay says.

Currently, there are no changes in the itinerary, said Nair, but that could change depending on further activity.

The violent eruption would cause a continuous process of rock from the volcano's inside walls to be shaken loose, fall into the lava, and then explode. And once the lava drops below the water table, water hits rocks that are as hot as nearly 2,200 degrees (1,200 degrees Celsius) and flashes into steam. When the water hits the lava, it additionally steams.

Rocks thrown up by a steam explosion are a big hazard. Janet Coney is workplace supervisor of the Kilauea Lodge, an inn and restaurant.

"The earthquakes that we get at volcanoes can tell us an bad lot of what the magma is doing as it's moving through the rocks", Johnson told CBC News.

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