Hawaii volcano crater aerial views: USGS picture shows MASSIVE crater size in perspective | World | News


The huge crater domineers image one on the left as an yellow arrow on the right points to the barely viewable HVO and Jaggar Museum, located 2.5 miles away.

The museum is home to the Kilauea Visitor Centre in Hawaii Volcanoes National Park, closed last month after ash began pouring down from above.

The second image is a closer image taken at the edge of the summit – both were captured by a helicopter overflight on June 18.

Kilauea’s Halema‘uma‘u Crater has nearly doubled in size since eruptions began on May 3, 2018, according to USGS scientists.

In its latest update, the scientific agency said: “These two photos taken on yesterday’s helicopter overflight of the summit show the size of the growing Halema‘uma‘u Crater – seeing HVO and Jaggar Museum in the view helps to put the crater size in context.

“A preliminary estimate of summit volume loss is around 250 million cubic meters.”

USGS also confirmed another explosion occurred at 5am local time today (4pm BST).

This caused an ash and gas plume to reach 5,000 ft above sea level.

In a Facebook update, USGS said: “Inward slumping of the rim and walls of Halemaʻumaʻu continues in response to ongoing subsidence at the summit.”

What is the air quality like?

Levels of vog are lower than in previous days but light winds are expected to carry the volcanic smog into the saddle and interior parts of Big Island, over the next few days.

Current air quality levels are good or moderate.

Hawaii county officials confirmed Fissure 8 continues to erupt violently, with one channel entering into the Pacific Ocean at Kapoho.

Fissures from the Leilani Estate area have now destroyed 5,914 acres, equivalent to nine and a quarter square miles of land.

Some 533 homes have been destroyed.

In addition, 817 people have registered with the Federal Emergency Management Agency for assistance as of yesterday.

Last week, President Trump approved federal emergency housing aid and other relief to help victims living on Big Island.

Eruptions could continue for months, scientists have warned.

The Hawaiian Volcano Observatory said last month that “eruptive activity is increasing and is expected to continue”.

This is due to the lowering of the lava lake at the summit as the magma drops.

If falls below the water table, then the water could mix with lava creating huge steam explosions.

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