HAWAII VOLCANOES NATIONAL PARK – Things appear to be returning to “normal” at the summit of Kilauea volcano. The unusual signs of unrest seen last weekend have leveled off.
From today’s Kilauea volcano activity update:
Seismicity rates beneath Kīlauea’s summit, upper East Rift Zone and Southwest Rift Zone were at normal, background levels during the past day. The tiltmeter in the south caldera recorded a small decrease in tilt in a direction associated with magma accumulation in the Southwest Rift Zone. Other tiltmeters in the summit area were either flat, or recording minor inflationary tilt from the area of Halemaʻumaʻu. Correlated with minor inflation, the summit lava lake level rose slightly as well. Sulfur dioxide emission rates averaged 3,400-6,900 tonnes/day for the week ending May 12.”USGS Hawaiian Volcano Observatory
Earlier this month, the lava lake at Kilauea’s summit overflowed the overlook vent, reaching its highest point since the eruption began in 2008. Then, last week, the lava lake began to drop, earthquakes began to swarm, and an unusual deformation pattern was measured near the summit. All the activity indicated to scientists that magma had moved on the southern part of the caldera and upper Southwest Rift Zone. The USGS issued a special information statement about what might happen next. The National Park Service also put some restrictions into place within the park itself.
As of Wednesday, the Hawaii Volcanoes National Park website no longer warns of any evening closures.