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Latest USGS Assessment Shows Speed of Kilauea Lava Flow Increasing as Work Continues on Evacuation Routes

  |  Big Island: Weather and Nature
USGS Kilauea lava flow map

USGS HVO: This map uses a satellite image acquired in March 2014 as a base image to show the area around the front of the June 27th lava flow. The purple arrows show the projected path of the flow over the coming two weeks, based on the current flow activity and local topography. Lava flow behavior is complex and this projection is subject to change. Satellite image provided by Digital Globe.

Puna Residents on Alert as Lava Flow Moves through Kahoe Homesteads toward Pahoa

The latest projection map from USGS (U.S Geological Survey) shows the progression of lava through vacant, forested land in the Kahoe Homesteads subdivision in Puna. According to USGS, the flow, if it continues at its current rate, could reach Pahoa on or around October 1.

From USGS:

“At the average rate of advancement of 290 m/day (960 ft/day) since September 15, we project that lava could flow from its current location to Apa`a Road in 9 days and to the Pāhoa Village Road (government road) in Pāhoa within 13 days. These estimates will be updated after our next overflight scheduled for Friday.”

Two local websites, Big Island Video News and Hawaii 24/7, are providing frequent updates about the progression of the flow as well as the work being done to clear alternate evacuation routes for lower Puna residents. These sites are also posting live video coverage from overflights and images from USGS and local photographers. Other websites to visit for updates and information:

From Big Island Video News:

Flow Background:

East Rift Zone vents and flow field: The eruption in Kīlauea’s middle East Rift Zone started with a fissure eruption on January 3, 1983, and continued with few interruptions at Puʻu ʻŌʻō Cone, or temporarily from vents within a few kilometers to the east or west. A fissure eruption on the upper east flank of Puʻu ʻŌʻō Cone on Sept. 21, 2011, drained the lava lakes and fed a lava flow (Peace Day flow) that advanced southeast through the abandoned Royal Gardens subdivision to the ocean within Hawaiʻi Volcanoes National Park in early December 2011. The flows stalled and re-entered the ocean starting on November 24, 2012, until activity started to decline and the ocean entry ceased in August 20, 2013; the flow was dead by early November, 2013. The Kahaualeʻa flow, which started from the spatter cone/lava lake at the northeast edge of the Puʻu ʻŌʻō crater floor in mid-January 2013 was dead by late April, but a new flow (informally called Kahaualeʻa 2) became active in the same area in early May 2013, waxing with inflation and waning with deflation. The Kahaualeʻa 2 flow died following the onset of a new breakout from the northeast flank of Puʻu ʻŌʻō on June 27, 2014. The June 27th flow continues to advance toward the northeast.

Source:  USGS/HVO Kilauea Status updates

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