(BIVN) – The new, explosive fissure that began erupting lava on Sunday morning, first referred to as fissure 18, has been renamed as fissure number 17. Scientists say that is because yesterday’s late evening event, called fissure 17 at the time, never erupted lava.
The Hawaiian Volcano Observatory reports that Fissure 17 off Halekamahina Loop Road “is at least several hundred yards long and producing lava spatter. Lava is slowly moving away from the vent at this time.”
The new outbreak was just over a half mile northeast of the end of Hinalo St. and about one half mile south of Highway 132, as of early this morning.
Emergency officials say Ttis newest fissure is on private property, “do not trespass.” Continued earthquake activity and additional outbreaks in the area are likely.
Due to the volcanic activity, Hawaii County Civil Defense says:
- Highway 132 is closed at Pohoiki Road intersection. Only local traffic allowed on Highway 132 (Pahoa-Kapoho Road) and Highway 137 (Beach Road).
- Highway 130 is closed at the intersection of Highway 132. Only local traffic allowed into Leilani Subdivision. Highway 130 remains closed between Malama Street and Kama’ili Road.
- No one is allowed to go off-road sightseeing. Stay out of the active eruption area. Allow the residents to care for their business.
- Residents of Halekamahina Road are ordered to evacuate and be on the alert for gas emissions and lava spatter.
- Residents of lower Puna: there may be little to no advance notice to evacuate, so take this time to prepare. If you evacuate voluntarily, pet-friendly shelters are open at Pahoa Community Center and Kea’au Community Center.
- Vacation rentals in lower Puna are directed to cease operations to relieve the demand for water as well as reduce the area population so emergency responders can focus on residents who live in the area.
- Hawaii Police Department is enforcing the Federal Aviation Administration’s Temporary Flight Restriction for lower Puna. No helicopter or drone activity is allowed without approval.
“County, State and Federal partners continue to monitor the situation,” civil defense says. “You will be informed of any conditions that affect your safety.”