Small Earthquake Triggered by Minor KIlauea Explosion

Hawaii volcano eruption lava flow map

An eruption at Kilauea summit jolted the area Wednesday with the force of a 5.4 magnitude quake and hurled an ash plume that reached 10,000 feet above sea level.

Since May 3, Kilauea's lava, ash and rocks have destroyed about 600 homes, closed major highways and prompted health warnings. Scientists said a new lava delta has grown to 200 acres, while lava from Fissure 8 bursts 130 to 180 feet up in the air.

According to the county of Hawaii civil defense agency, severe conditions may exist such as inability to breathe and choking. It was flowing north and then east toward a community the lava wiped out last week. Lava was shooting into the sky from one vent and there was "weak" activity at two other fissures, which weren't producing much of a flow and not advancing very far, Babb said.

The observatory predicted another small explosion to occur within 24 hours and reported sulfur dioxide emissions from the summit dropped by about half. He told reporters on Monday that temblors are almost continuous at the summit and that gas emissions remain "very high".

The Kapoho ocean entry area continued to produce robust plumes, and USGS said "observers also noted vigorous convection taking place up to 0.9 miles offshore from the entry points".

A large flow of lava from a fissure that has already destroyed hundreds of homes is continuing to enter the ocean at Kapoho Bay. Mayor Kim's home was also destroyed by the volcano. Venturing too close to an ocean entry on land or the ocean exposes you to flying debris from sudden explosive interaction between lava and water.

"Lava can't get hotter than where we are".

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