Hawaii volcano Kilauea is spewing rivers of lava that have unleashed a path of destruction across the Easter side of Hawaii’s Big Island.
Keele University geologist Dr Ralf Gertisser warned “mightily explosive activity” is expected to continue as Kilauea sputters ash clouds 12,000 feet into the atmosphere.
Dr Gertisser said: “I believe the eruption of Kilauea will continue, we will continue to see lava flow emissions along the East rift zone.
“We will continue to see mightily explosive activity or ash emissions in the summit area: sometimes they will be a bit stronger, sometimes they will be less strong but it is likely that this activity is continuing.”
The academic also said that the ash clouds pose a risk to both flights and people on the ground due to debris being hurled into the air.
The US Geological Survey (USGS) said in a statement microwave-sized “ballistic blocks” had been recovered after being propelled out of Kilauea – sparking fears of an imminent explosive eruption.
Dr Gertisser continued: “Any explosive activity at Kilauea must be regarded as unusual because predominantly the activity is effusive.
“Recently the alert level was raised to the highest level largely because of these ash emissions at the summit. The ash emissions were up to 3 to 4 km into the atmosphere and pose a hazard to flights and minor hazard to people on the ground from ash fall.”
Hawaii Army National Guard Brig. Gen. Kenneth Hara announced he is preparing to potentially evacuate an extra 1,000 people from the Puna area on Big Island.
Around 1,700 people have already been ordered to leave their homes after lava spewed into neighbourhoods.
The Brig. Gen. told local reporters evacuating will become necessary should lava flows reach the highway.
He also said he is ready to recall National Guards helicopter currently training in Texas before deployment to Kuwait to carry out the evacuation.
The eruption of the Hawaii volcano has already seen lava spew from cracks in roads and across the land destroying 37 homes and damaging many more.