20th Fissure Opens, Elevated Levels of Sulfur Dioxide
Hawaiian Volcano Observatory reports a new fissure has opened in the Lanipuna Gardens Subdivision northeast from fissure 19. That brings the total count to 20 since the eruption onset in the East Rift Zone on May 3, 2018. The narrow lava flow from fissure 17 is still moving slowly toward the ocean at approximately 20 yards per hour. There are no homes or roads threatened at this time.
Due to the volcanic activity, the following are issued:
- The Hawaii Department of Transportation (HDOT) is working to reopen the Keaʻau-Pāhoa Road (Highway 130) from Mālama Street to Kamaili Road this morning for local traffic only. Motorists are advised to drive with caution as metal plates will be placed over the cracks on the roadway. HDOT and County personnel will be stationed along the route to ensure the roadway is safe for local traffic.
- Dept. of Health reports hazardous emissions of sulfur dioxide (SO2) gas from fissures are especially dangerous for elderly, children/babies and people with respiratory problems. SO2 can be carried with wind, or, cover an area with no wind.
- Residents of Lower Puna are advised to be on the alert to gas emissions.
- Highway 132 is closed at Pohoiki Road intersection and a checkpoint is located on Highway 130 by Pāhoa High School. Only local traffic allowed beyond all roadblocks.