Volcanoes in Hawaii: Recent Activity

Volcanoes in Hawaii: Recent Activity


Most of our dated entries from June on went into our vog blog. You will find all kinds of useful links there.

Here is the link to a press release from the USGS about Halemaumau Crater on September 5th

For a full timeline of events this year, this USGS page is great, it gives events from most recent to past events.

For the Hawaii County Civil Defense explanation of the danger codes and recommendations from the American Lung Association of Hawai‘i (supported by the Department of Health), see our page on the Hawaii Big Island Vog Index.

Parts of the park are closed at times due to dangerous emissions from the Halemaumau Crater.

These emissions seem to be lessening, but their effects have been felt statewide, as they have reached ten times their normal level.

The crater began venting an incandescent gas on 11 or 12 March, and then began a series of sudden explosions early on the morning of 19 March. After being inactive for almost thirty five years Halemaumau Crater, Kilauea Volcano gave everybody a wake up call. On its south east wall a cloud of ash and lava was evident.

Although Kilauea is the most active Volcano in the world, the Halemaumau Crater hasn't erupted like this since 1924.The explosions have scattered large debris (made up of old rocks) around the crater, and a white gritty substance as far as 19 miles down wind. There was no lava in the debris.

As for other current activity, Hawaii County has been operating a Lava Viewing Area from 2 P.M. to 10 P.M. The lava viewing area is right on the ocean and makes for a spectacular adventure.You can view the Pu`u `O`o vent flow's newest journey to the sea between these hours.

Observers have been reporting amazing views of the fast paced lava flow as it races to the sea in record time. Great photo opportunities are available for even the novice photographer.

Kalapana Safe Viewing Program Has Daily Telephone Hotline Updates

Hawai`i County Civil Defense has set up a new telephone hotline to provide daily updates on viewing at the Kalapana Safe Viewing site.

The lava hotline phone number is 961-8093, which lets you know the lava viewing hours for the day ahead. The lava hotline automated message is updated every day at 10 a.m.

The Kalapana Safe Viewing program at the volcanic eruption site is a wonderful natural attraction, and the County Civil Defense Agency wants all visitors to enjoy the experience in safety and comfort.

With that in mind, we encourage visitors to prepare not only for sunny days at the lava viewing sight but also for rain. Please note that there are no shelters at the site in case of rain.

For your comfort and convenience, please prepare for rain keeping in mind any trip hazard:

· An umbrella and/or

· Windbreaker or raincoat

Visitors are also strongly advised to take the following gear for both safety and comfort:

· Bottled water (2-3 quarts or liters per person)

· Sturdy closed boots or shoes and socks

· Flashlight (1 per person) and fresh batteries

· Long pants

· Sun hat and sunscreen

· Binoculars (optional)

Visitors are allowed entry to the viewing area every day from 2 p.m., with the last vehicles admitted at 8:00 p.m. This will allow officials to ensure that everybody is out of the area by 10 p.m. The viewing area is closed between 10 pm and 2 pm. This schedule is subject to change; hazardous conditions may require changes to the schedule or closure.

Visitors are reminded to obey all the warning signs and stay within the allowed areas to ensure their safety. The newly formed lava and black sand beach are extremely unstable, and can collapse into the ocean at any time. Visitors must stay well away from the volcanic steam clouds which contain hydrochloric acid and glass particles.

Please note: There is no cell phone coverage in the viewing area.

For current information, on safety, and lava viewing follow this link

Videos of Recent Activity

Current videos of Kilauea's Halemaumau Crater. Shows the Crater emitting a thousand foot high plume of ashes smoke and gases out of the South Eastern rim.

Helicopters and Airplanes have been advised to avoid the area.

Click here to go to our page on the Vog Index, and learn valuable tips from the Hawaii County Civil Defense

For other videos of eruptions and lava flows go back to our Volcanoes in Hawaii page

To see videos and info on Kilauea visit our page dedicated to Kilauea: The most active volcano in the world.

To go to our page on the Dormant Volcano Mauna Kea and see videos of the snow and snowboarding, follow this link

To go to our page on Mauna Loa: the largest Volcano in the world, follow this link