(BIVN) – A new fissure opened near the entrance of the Lanipuna Subdivision today and began actively erupting. Officials are on site assessing the situation, emergency officials reported. The entire Hawaii County Civil Defense message is found in the video above and in text below.
Also this afternoon, Governor David Ige held a press conference to announce he was taking steps to mitigate risks to Puna Geothermal Venture posed by the ongoing eruption.
From the Office of the Governor:
HONOLULU – Gov. David Ige has issued a supplemental emergency proclamation for the 2018 Kilauea eruption that, among other emergency management functions, establishes lines of authority that will enable a more comprehensive response to changing and unpredictable risks posed by the current eruption. Those risks include possible impacts to Puna Geothermal Venture (PGV), which is located on Kilauea’s Lower East Rift Zone.
The governor is exercising his authority, as provided by Hawaii Revised Statutes 127A-12(13), and has directed the Director of Emergency Management, the Administrator of the Hawaii Emergency Management Agency, Mayor Harry Kim, and the administrator of the Hawaii Civil Defense Agency, to lead a team to develop and implement mitigation steps as necessary to protect public health and safety. In addition to county responders, the team will include federal and state agencies, as well as PGV.
In announcing his plans, Gov. Ige said, “I am placing a tremendous degree of responsibility on two nationally and internationally renowned emergency and mission managers. Hawai‘i Emergency Management Agency (HI-EMA) Administrator and retired U.S. Navy Captain Thomas Travis, and County of Hawai‘i Mayor Harry Kim, are proven leaders who care deeply for the public and have the capacity to plan, mobilize and get the job done in a quick and efficient manner.”
Given the current situation, the governor determined that a team approach will ensure the most responsive and effective outcomes. Therefore, he has directed Administrator Travis to work directly with Mayor Kim and the County of Hawai‘i’s Civil Defense Director Talmadge Magno. Other key agencies include the Hawai‘i National Guard, the state Departments of Health, and Land and Natural Resources, as well as the County of Hawai‘i’s Departments of Planning, Fire, Police and Parks and Recreation. Puna Geothermal Venture will be incorporated into the team to provide critical knowledge of the facility and operational functions.
The team will review and assess the existing PGV Emergency Response Plan and develop a specific mission strategy deemed appropriate to mitigate potential impacts from lava. Expected steps include addressing the supplies of pentane gas used in the production of geothermal power including options for off-site relocation or controlled leakage or burn. Contingency plans will be made to secure and evacuate area residents should lava intrusions cause elevated levels of hydrogen sulfide (H2S) or sulfur dioxide (SO2) to be released.
“State and county teams will work closely to marshal the necessary resources to fully engage and ensure a successful effort to secure PGV’s facilities and protect public health, safety and the environment,” said Gov. Ige.
Gov. Ige and his team have spent several days in the field viewing and assessing the current eruption and conducting briefings and meetings with Mayor Kim, state and federal resources and community members to fully assess the ongoing activities and impacts in the Kilauea Lower East Rift zone.
Hawaii County Civil Defense at 2 p.m.
There are no threats to Nanawale Estates at this time.
Conditions permitting, Leilani Estates residents will be allowed to check on their property from 7 AM to 6 PM each day until further notice. Be prepared to evacuate at a moment’s notice.
Civil Defense has established the Recovery Information and Assistance Center (RIAC) at the Sacred Hearts Church in Pāhoa, Monday to Friday from 9 AM to 3 PM.
Entry placard registration for residents wishing to retrieve personal items will be issued at RIAC throughout the week.
The County is taking care of all animals whose evacuated owners reported them left behind.
The County of Hawaii and Civil Defense are not associated with the website www.punalavaflow2018.com.
Road Status Update:
Highway 130 is closed between Malama Street and Kamaili Road.
Pohoiki Road is closed from Highway 132 to Hinalo Street.
No access is allowed at this time for residents of Lanipuna Gardens due to dangerous volcanic gases.
Spectrum has installed free Wi-Fi access at the Keaau Community Center, Pāhoa Community Center, Pāhoa Senior Center, Recovery Information and Assistance Center at Sacred Hearts Church, and the Food/Supply Center at the corner of Highway 130 and 132.
The Hawaii National Guard will be in the area conducting presence patrols to provide assistance and security in the area.
The Kalapana Transfer Station is closed until further notice. The closure is due to the inability of the County’s commercial vehicles to safely access the site. The public can continue to use the Pāhoa Transfer Station, located in Pāhoa Village and open 7 days a week, from 6:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.
Hawai‘i Electric Light reminds residents to treat all downed lines as live. Under no circumstances are you to approach or touch downed lines.
Dept. of Water Supply has issued an Emergency water restriction for the Pohoiki, Vacationland and Kapoho area due to the impacts to the bypass waterline caused by the latest fissure event.
Water spigots installed near the entrance of Lava Tree State Park and a water tanker in Vacationland are still available for the public to access.
Temporary Flight Restriction (TFR) is in effect. All aviation request are administered by the Fire Department.
United States Postal Service announced that evacuated residents can pick up their mail at the Pāhoa Post Office.
The Hawai‘i County Police Department and the Prosecutor’s Office have established a policy of zero tolerance towards looting or vandalism. Under Emergency Provisions, any looting or vandalism will be treated as a felony.
DOH is working on updating SO2 data reporting online. Hawaii Interagency Vog Information Dashboard.
Puna Geothermal Venture (PGV) reports no activity at this time and the facility is secured. Precautionary measures are being taken to remove flammable materials offsite.
Mayor Kim assures that PGV hazards/risks will be mitigated in the best possible way.
Contact the Humane Society for animal information.
HVO has confirmed a large ash plume/explosion at Halemaʻumaʻu. The plume is being carried by wind towards the Pahala direction. Light ash dusting could occur in populated areas west of Halemaʻumaʻu.
A Community Informational Meeting will be held at the Volcano Community Center at 7:00 p.m. tonight. HVO experts will present the scientific background of the current eruption.
The residents of Leilani Estates are going through a very difficult time. We ask for your understanding. We ask for your help.
County, State and Federal partners continue to monitor the situation. You will be informed of any conditions that affect your safety.