The deadly volcano in Guatemala has been causing widespread damage and claiming the lives of local residents, but Hawaii’s Kilauea volcano still continues to rage.
More than four weeks have passed since Hawaii’s Big Island was rocked by Kilauea’s first eruption, opening volcanic fissures and causing widespread damage.
So far, more than 1,000 homes have been destroyed in the wake of the disaster but thankfully no deaths have been reported.
The Kilauea eruption has covered an area of 5,000 acres and lava flow has been described as a ‘flood’.
Is Kilauea still erupting?
Kilauea volcano remains under red alert according to the United States Geographical Survey (USGS), which means it is currently still spewing lava.
The USGS website says: “Vigorous eruption of lava continues from the lower East Rift Zone (LERZ) fissure system in the area of Leilani Estates and Lanipuna Gardens”.
Warnings of volcanic ash from the fissure eruptions are also in effect and the summit remains particularly active as earthquake activity takes place.
A magnitude 5.5 earthquake rocked the area on Sunday, resulting in an 8,000 foot ash plume.
And earthquake activity has steadily increased since then, with thousands reported in a 24-hour period alone this weekend.
Lava from a fissure nearby the active volcano has also leaked into the ocean prompting warnings of ‘laze’, a lava and haze combination, from Hawaiian authorities.
The resultant steam from the lava creates a noxious mixture that is leaking into the atmosphere, with hydrochloric acid and volcanic gas posing threats to anyone nearby.
Laze is an irritant which can irritate the skin, eyes and lungs of people nearby.
Hawaii Civil Defense Administrator Talmadge Magno advised that people should stand at least 1,000 feet back from the area.
When will Kilauea stop spewing lava?
As Kilauea continues its activity, there is evidence that the volcano could soon stop spewing lava.
Changes on Kilauea’s surface indicate that the volcano may be about to stop, but it could mean more explosions are inbound.
New aerial footage has indicated that the vent inside the Halema‘uma‘u crater at the volcanoes summit has been filled by boulders shaken loose by the eruption.
So far, the blockage has prevented ash plumes from building up but the debris could be dislodged by a new explosion, allowing lava to continue to spill.