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May 4, 2018 – A magnitude 6.9 earthquake occurred 16km SW of Leilani Estates, Hawaii.

Hawaii County police, fire, and county agencies, along with the National Guard and partners, continue to assist with an evacuation of the Leilani Estates and Lanipuna Gardens subdivisions in the face of a volcanic eruption in the area. All Leilani Estates and Lanipuna Gardens Subdivision residents are ordered to evacuate immediately.

Hawaii County Fire Department reports that extremely high levels of dangerous sulfur dioxide gas have been detected in the evacuation area affected by recent volcanic activity. Elderly residents, young people, and others with respiratory issues should leave the area immediately.

The Pahoa Community Center and the Kea’au Community Center are open for shelter. Residents evacuating should bring an emergency evacuation supply kit including necessary medicine, food, and necessary items for your comfort if possible.

Kua O Ka La Charter School, Hawaii Academy of Arts and Science, Keonepoko Elementary and Pahoa High, Intermediate, and Elementary will be closed today.

A temporary flight restriction is in place for most of lower Puna. The Hawaii Police Department reminds the public that drones can be confiscated in the Temporary Flight Restriction Area (TFR). More information is available at

Pohoiki Road is closed from the intersection at Highway 132 down to Highway 137 to support the ongoing evacuation efforts.

Puna Geothermal Venture remains closed and power production is suspended until further notice.


May 4, 2018

New lava fissure on Makamae and Leilani Streets in Leilani Estates subdivision

A new lava fissure commenced around 1:00 am HST on Kīlauea Volcano’s lower East Rift Zone on Makamae and Leilani Streets in the Leilani Estates subdivision. Spatter was being thrown roughly 30 m (about 100 ft) high at the time of this photo. Copious amounts of sulfur dioxide gas, which should be avoided, is emitted from active fissures. The eruption is dynamic and changes could occur with little warning.

Steaming cracks at 5:57 a.m. HST in Leilani Estates subdivision, moments before a fissure opened up on Kaupili Street.

May 3, 2018

Eruption begins on Kīlauea Volcano’s lower East Rift Zone

Left: An eruption has commenced in the Leilani Estates subdivision in the lower East Rift Zone of Kīlauea Volcano. White, hot vapor and blue fume emanated from an area of cracking in the eastern part of the subdivision. Spatter began erupting shortly before 5:00 p.m. HST. Lava was confirmed at the surface in the eastern end of the subdivision, in the areas of Mohala and Leilani Streets. According to the Hawai‘i County Civil Defense update at 5:40 p.m., all residents in Leilani Estates and Lanipuna Gardens Subdivsions are required to evacuate. Right: The opening phases of fissure eruptions are dynamic. Additional vents and new lava outbreaks may occur. The fissure in Leilani Estates (as of 6:00 p.m.) was about 150 m (164 yards) long.

This video shows the small fissure that opened in the Leilani Estates subdivision today around 5:00 p.m. The fissure was active until about 6:30 p.m.

Areas downslope of the erupting vent are at risk of lava inundation. At this time, the general area of the Leilani Estates subdivision appears at greatest risk. Hawai‘i County Civil Defense is on scene and coordinating needed responses, including evacuation of the Leilani Estates and Lanipuna Gardens subdivisions.

Residents of the lower Puna District should remain alert, review individual, family, and business emergency plans, and watch for further information about the status of the volcano. Hawai‘i County Civil Defense messages may be found at
Deep collapse crater at Pu‘u ‘Ō‘ō; Episode 61g flow field is inactive

After a long period of rain and low clouds, improved weather and high clouds today allowed good airborne observations of the collapse crater in Pu‘u ‘Ō‘ō. This photo looks to the east, and shows the deep collapse crater formed on Monday, April 30, when magma beneath Pu‘u ‘Ō‘ō drained. For scale, the crater is about 250 meters (820 feet) wide.

Left: This wide shot looks northeast, and shows the fissure that formed on the west flank of the Pu‘u ‘Ō‘ō cone (line of white steam). The fissure extends roughly 1.5 km (0.9 mi) west of Pu‘u ‘Ō‘ō Crater, and nearly reaches the bottom of the photograph. Right: Another wide view, from the east, showing the dust-rich plume and coating of reddish ash to the south of Pu‘u ‘Ō‘ō.

Left: A view of Pu‘u ‘Ō‘ō from the east, shortly after a small collapse. The coating of red ash on the south side of the cone (left side of photo) is evident. Right: At 10:31 a.m. HST, while HVO geologists were working on Pu‘u ‘Ō‘ō, a magnitude-5.0 earthquake shook the ground around the cone. Moments later, a collapse occurred in the crater of Pu‘u ‘Ō‘ō, creating a robust, reddish-brown ash plume.

HVO geologists confirmed that the Episode 61g flow is now inactive. Thermal images showed no active breakouts on the flow field. This photo shows the area where breakouts were focused prior to magma draining from Pu‘u ‘Ō‘ō earlier in the week.
Ash plume rises above Pu‘u ‘Ō‘ō

At 10:30 HST, ground shaking from a preliminary magnitude-5.0 earthquake south of Pu‘u ‘Ō‘ō caused rockfalls and possibly additional collapse into the Pu‘u ‘Ō‘ō crater on Kīlauea Volcano’s East Rift Zone. A short-lived plume of ash produced by this event lofted skyward and dissipated as it drifted southwest from Pu‘u ‘Ō‘ō. Downwind areas may have experienced a dusting of ash from this plume. At this time, the 10:30 earthquake has caused no other changes at Kīlauea Volcano. HVO will continue to closely watch monitoring data for any changes. This image was captured from an HVO overflight carrying HVO scientists to the East Rift Zone for field work today. USGS photo by Kevan Kamibayashi.