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Explosive eruption at Hawaii volcano

18 May 2018

The USGS issued a new volcanic activity notice Thursday morning, saying the ash cloud from the most recent explosion reached as high as 30,000 feet (9,100 meters) and that the volcano could produce more ballistic projectiles at any time. But George Szigeti noted that the Big Island is "immense" and there are large parts of the island unaffected by the volcano.

The Department of Transportation reports operations are normal at Hilo International Airport and Ellison Onizuka Kona International Airport at Keahole.

Scientists are predicting an eruption that shot ash almost 9 kilometres into the sky could be the first of a series of powerful explosions to rock Hawai'i's Kilauea volcano, reports SBS News.

Please click on the image to open it in a new window, and then click on the plume to zoom in.

Washington state has five active volcanoes, including two of the top three most unsafe volcanoes in the United States, according to the U.S. Geological Survey.

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"A lot of my friends from the mainland, they have been inundating me with, 'Are you OK?' A lot of them think we're (just) one island", she said.

Last week, scientists said that if Kilauea's lava lake drains too fast, it could trigger explosions that hurl refrigerator-size boulders into the air.

The eruption at 4:14 a.m. local time at the volcano's summit followed a similar but smaller eruption Tuesday.

The volcano rises 4,190 ft above sea stage and makes up round 14 per cent of the land space of the Huge Island.

The bill directs the U.S. Geological Survey to unify current volcano monitoring systems - including the Hawaiian Volcano Observatory, Alaska Volcano Observatory and the Cascades Volcano Observatory - into a single, connected system called the National Volcano Early Warning System.

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Residents who live in a nearby town reported light amounts of ash after the eruption. About 20 fissures opened in communities along the volcano's eastern slopes, prompting evacuations of almost 2,000 residents and engulfing dozens of homes in lava. Crews were working in the subdivision in the last few days and have narrowly escaped situations that could have resulted in severe injury, the power utility said. Adding to the distress, of the 36 structures destroyed, 26 were homes.

About two hours later, Mr Poland said the webcam view showed a dusty plume rising from the summit.

Officials have said they did not expect the explosion to be deadly as long as people remained out of the park.

Thursday's eruption, which occurred before dawn, produced an impressive ash plume, but otherwise caused minimal damage to surrounding areas.

Staff at the volcano observatory and the national park had been previously evacuated.

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Explosive eruption at Hawaii volcano