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Hawaii Mount Kilauea: Explosive eruption at volcano

Hawaii Mount Kilauea: Explosive eruption at volcano

Here's what to know about Kilauea's latest eruption.

The Hawaiian Volcano Observatory has found dense, large rocks roughly two feet in diameter (60 centimeters) in a parking lot a few hundred yards (meters) away from Kilauea's summit crater.

Kilauea is one of five active volcanoes on the island of Hawaii.

According to Kion 546, while, as mentioned above, the eruption is not expected to be deadly, nearby residents are being asked to shelter in place in order to avoid the eruption, if they are in the path of the ash plume, which appears to be traveling southeast thanks to the wind.

This Wednesday, May 16, 2018, image provided by the U.S. Geological Survey shows sulfur dioxide plumes rising from fissures along the rift and accumulating in the cloud deck, viewed from the Hawaiian Volcano Observatory overflight in the morning at 8:25 a.m., HST near Pahoa, Hawaii.

While the code red warning seemed to be staying for a while, USGS volcanologist Michelle Coombs mentioned in a video statement that the threat is very immediate.

The Hawaii Fire Department reported "extremely unsafe air quality conditions due to high levels of sulfur dioxide gas in the evacuation area", civil defense officials said on Saturday.

The explosion at the mountain summit came shortly after 4 a.m. following two weeks of volcanic activity that sent lava flows into neighborhoods and destroyed at least 26 homes. "They didn't hear it", Ms Aton said.

Hawaii Gov. David Ige says the state is forming a joint task force that could handle mass evacuations of the Big Island's Puna district if lava from Kilauea volcano covers major roads and isolates the area. Accumulations were expected to be less than a quarter of an inch in the areas surrounding the summit of the volcano.

The crater sits within Hawaii Volcanoes National Park, which has been closed since May 11 because of the risk of a more violent eruption.

The US Geological Survey said the eruption took place at 05:00 local time (15:00 GMT).

Officials have said the eruption isn't likely to be risky as long as people stay out of the closed park.

They warn: "There has been volcanic eruption on Hawaii's Big Island and some local residents have been evacuated".