(BIVN) – In light of growing concerns over the COVID-19 pandemic, Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park remains open but is ending all special events and programs as of today.
From the National Park Service:
Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park remains open, but is modifying operations to implement the latest guidance from the White House, Centers for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC), and local and state authorities to promote social distancing. As of Tuesday, March 17, all special events and guided programs, including hikes, walks and talks, are canceled until further notice.
Kīlauea Visitor Center is also closed, but park rangers and volunteers will be available to answer general questions about the park on the visitor center’s outdoor lānai daily from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. The Kahuku Unit is also open Wednesday through Sunday, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.
All previously open trails and overlooks are open for healthy outdoor recreational opportunities.
In addition, a community talk-story event scheduled for Thursday, March 19 in Pāhala to discuss potential future uses of Kīlauea volcano’s Great Crack area is postponed until further notice. In the meantime, the public is encouraged to submit comments via email to email@example.com, or in writing to Superintendent, Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park, P.O. Box 52, Hawaii National Park, HI 96718.
The health and safety of our visitors, employees, volunteers, and partners at Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park is our number one priority. The National Park Service (NPS) is working with the federal, state, and local authorities to closely monitor the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) situation. We will notify the public when we resume full operations and provide updates on our website and social media channels.
The NPS urges visitors to do their part when visiting a park and to follow CDC guidance to prevent the spread of infectious diseases by maintaining a safe distance between yourself and other groups; washing your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds; avoiding touching your eyes, nose, and mouth; covering your mouth and nose when you cough or sneeze; and most importantly, staying home if you feel sick.
For high-risk populations, such as the elderly and people with underlying conditions, we ask that they take extra caution and follow CDC guidance for those at higher risk of serious illness.
Updates about NPS operations are being posted on National Park Service website.