Hawaii prepares for worse lava flows

Hawaii prepares for worse lava flows

She says hotter, fresher and gassier magma can result in more voluminous lava flows.

Scientists believe lava that's been erupting in a Hawaii residential neighborhood since last week is magma that's been stored in the ground since Kilauea volcano erupted in the same region 63 years ago.

Local meteorologists said the change in prevailing winds could send Kilauea's volcanic smog, or vog, northwest to Maui and other islands in Hawaii.

Geologists are warning a possible explosion at the summit of Kilauea could be the largest in almost 100 years, hurling boulders the size of refridgerators.

There is also concern that Kilauea volcano could soon send boulders and ash shooting out of its summit crater. Smigelski-Theiss says she's anxious potential flight disruptions would strand them on the island.

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

The U.S. Geological Survey said 16 fissures have now opened up on the Big Island.

The volcanic vents have oozed relatively cool, sluggish magma left over from a similar event in 1955. "When you start seeing ferns go brown overnight, it's like, 'Wow, I gotta get out of here, '" said Peters, sitting at a Red Cross evacuation center at a sports center in nearby Pahoa.

George Szigeti the CEO of the Hawaii Tourism Authority, the agency that promotes Hawaii to the world, said Kilauea is being monitored around the clock in order to provide the public with the best information.

Over the past week, the Big Island has experienced more than 600 earthquakes - a sign that something is occurring deep beneath the volcano.

"We have incredible Realtors with a fantastic work ethic and community spirit", said Kehaulani Costa, executive director of the Hawaii Island Realtors.

"We know what people are going through in Leilani Estates".

Hawaii's Governor David Ige said Friday US President Donald Trump had approved his request for a presidential disaster declaration on the island.

"We can't really peer through the ground and see it exactly in all its details and intricacies", Bill Chadwick, a volcanologist at NOAA, told NPR.

"Federal funding is available to the state and to eligible local governments and certain private nonprofit organizations on a cost-sharing basis for emergency work and the fix or replacement of facilities damaged by Kilauea volcanic eruption and earthquakes in Hawaii County", the government said in a statement late Friday.

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