Hawaii street swallowed by lava as more homes burn

Remigio Civitarese
Mag 26, 2018

The destructive fury of the erupting Kilauea volcano has been unleashed on the Big Island's Leilani Estates housing development, with the number of homes and other structures destroyed jumping to 82 from a previous count of 50 only a few days ago, according to David Mace, a spokesman for the Federal Emergency Management Agency.

Around 2,200 acres of land have been scorched by lava since 3 May in one of the most severe disruptions caused by the volcano in a century.

It is hoped the aerial images will assist scientists to better understand the volcano's activity and assess potential hazards with authorities warning even small pieces of molten rock can be fatal.

Mr Marzo said he was told by a US Geological Survey (USGS) geologist there was much more to come from Kilauea.

Where there were once houses and tropical back gardens in Leilani Estates, magma spews from 30-meter-high cinder cones and forms elevated ponds of molten rock that cascade over their banks to engulf the next street.

Anyone who has failed to escape the flows, risks being hemmed in by 30ft (9m) walls of lava.

Several businesses have had to close their doors due to the volcanic activity in Lower Puna
Several businesses have had to close their doors due to the volcanic activity in Lower Puna

And resident Isaac Krakauer took to Facebook Live to document lava flows claiming several homes in the Leilani Estates subdivision.

Earthquakes also have been occurring.

Those living in communities southwest of the Kilauea volcano are warned that wind might carry ash their way after the eruption Thursday night.

Two high schools where youngsters are undertaking their final exams have already been affected by ash.

Visitor numbers to the Connecticut-sized island so far in 2018 are "trending a little bit lower" than 2017, with the cancellation of some port visits by cruise ships expected to have a $3 million impact, Ross Birch, head of the island's tourism board said on a conference call.

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