Hawaii Volcano Concerns: Accidents, Air Travel Waiver, Emergency Proclamation

Kilauea Volcano Lava Flow May Resume With No Warning

The U.S.G.S. said late Thursday that while Kilauea Volcano isn’t currently erupting, there is an “elevated level of unrest.” As a result:

It is possible that an intrusion of magma beneath the surface or eruption of lava on the surface may occur at Kīlaueaʻs summit with little or no warning. — U.S.G.S.

The Hawaii Volcano Observatory’s monitoring has revealed “elevated rates of earthquake activity beneath the summit region. Small flurries of earthquakes have occurred irregularly beneath Halemaʻumaʻu, Keanakākoʻi Crater, and along the southern end of Kaluapele (Kīlauea caldera) since the early morning hours of Sunday, April 16, 2023.”

The observatory said there was minor ground inflation with the increase in seismicity. Gas emissions from the volcano, however, remain low.

They are now beginning regular daily updates at the observatory regarding Kilauea Volcano, reflecting the elevated unrest level. “The Volcano Alert Level/Aviation Color Code for Kīlauea remains at Advisory/Yellow.”

Last month’s sudden volcanic activity.

On March 11, 2023, the U.S.G.S. first said that an eruption was imminent, then abruptly reversed their statement.

They said subsequently, “Kīlauea volcano is not erupting. Geophysical signals recorded by the U.S.G.S. Hawaiian Volcano Observatory indicate that a magmatic intrusion occurred beneath the summit of Kīlauea between approximately 11:00 a.m. and 12:00 p.m. HST on March 11, 2023. As of 5:30 p.m. HST, seismicity has returned to background levels, ground deformation has stabilized, and no lava has been observed at the surface. Resumption of eruptive activity at Kīlauea summit no longer appears to be imminent, although it is possible that another intrusion or resumption may occur in the near future with little or no warning.”

That came after the U.S.G.S. said it had been “recording an inflationary signal at Kīlauea summit since March 7, indicating that magma has been accumulating beneath the surface. Tilt excursions also coincided with this morning’s earthquake swarm. Summit tilt has stabilized since approximately 12:00 p.m. HST although slow inflation continues.”

Flights were impacted in December 2022.

When Kilauea started erupting again last last year, there was a temporary halt on interisland flights. It isn’t clear how any future eruption could impact Hawaii flights, as was the case previously.

Hawaii’s Kilauea – is one of the world’s most active.

The 2018 eruption resulted in more than 700 homes being destroyed. Kilauea has had eruptions since 1983. In September 2021, the eruption started again, and then two months following that, Mauna Loa erupted. Before then, it had been almost 40 years since both had erupted simultaneously.


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