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Hawaii’s Kilauea volcano erupts again in a remote area

Kilauea is one of the most active volcanoes in the world.

HONOLULU (AP) — Kilauea, one of the world’s most active volcanoes, began erupting early Monday in a remote area that last erupted half a century ago, the U.S. Geological Survey’s Hawaiian Volcano Observatory said.

The eruption is occurring about a mile south of the Kilauea caldera, in an area within Hawaii Volcanoes National Park that last erupted in December 1974. The area around the caldera has been closed to the public since 2008 due to other hazards, including ground cracks and instability. in the crater wall and rock walls.

“Glow is visible in webcam images, indicating that lava is currently erupting from cracks,” the USGS observatory said. The 1974 eruption lasted only about six hours. The observatory said it is not yet possible to say how long this eruption will last.

This US Geological Survey image as seen from the Volcano Golf Course shows a plume from Hawaii's Kilauea volcano in the early morning hours on Monday, June 3, 2024. Kilauea, one of the most active volcanoes in the world, began erupting early Monday to erupt in an area that last erupted half a century ago, according to the US Geological Survey's Hawaiian Volcano Observatory.  (DA Phillips/US Geological Survey via AP)This US Geological Survey image as seen from the Volcano Golf Course shows a plume from Hawaii's Kilauea volcano in the early morning hours on Monday, June 3, 2024. Kilauea, one of the most active volcanoes in the world, began erupting early Monday to erupt in an area that last erupted half a century ago, according to the US Geological Survey's Hawaiian Volcano Observatory.  (DA Phillips/US Geological Survey via AP)
This US Geological Survey image as seen from the Volcano Golf Course shows a plume from Hawaii’s Kilauea volcano in the early morning hours on Monday. (DA Phillips/US Geological Survey via AP)

“The eruption is currently ongoing, but is occurring in a remote location within the national park, has a low eruption volume and poses no immediate threat to human life or critical infrastructure,” the observatory said.

Big Island Mayor Mitch Roth said residents are used to eruptions in the park. “People just need to realize this is one of the safest places it could have happened,” he said. “Absolutely no property at risk.”

The main hazard during Kilauea eruptions is usually volcanic gas, which reacts with the atmosphere and creates volcanic smog or “vog.” The bird can pose health risks to residents and visitors, damage plants and affect livestock, the observatory said.

“The only thing I’m a little concerned about right now is air quality,” Roth said. He said the communities of Oceanview and Naalehu may experience air quality issues.

The observatory recorded about 250 earthquakes beneath Kilauea’s summit in the hours before the eruption began. The observatory said it would publish daily updates on the eruption, as well as when there are significant changes in volcanic activity.

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