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PAHOA, Hawaii (Reuters) – Rockfalls and explosions at the summit of Hawaii’s Kilauea volcano shot ash into the air on Tuesday as residents for the first time in the 12-day eruption got text messages from county officials warning them the ash could cause eye and breathing irritation.
A plume of gray ash and smoke rose several thousand feet above Kilauea’s summit and drifted southwest to the Ka’u district and further downwind, the Hawaiian Volcano Observatory said.
The article goes on to state the following:
The ash threatened Ka’u district, which is about 30 miles southwest of Kilauea. To the east of the summit, toxic gas emanating from steaming gashes around 25 miles (40 km) toward the coast added to the danger facing residents, whose escape routes are threatened with closure because of lava flows, officials said.
Dangerous levels of sulfur dioxide gas and other emissions prompted state health officials to urge residents to stay indoors or leave the eastern end of Hawaii’s Big Island, which has been ravaged by volcanic activity since May 3.
A 20th fissure releasing lava and gases has opened on Kilauea’s side, state officials said Tuesday.
State Department of Health says current eruption activity is producing SO2 gas and other dangerous emissions. Leaving the area of volcanic activity or sheltering in place are the best ways to protect yourself and your family. https://t.co/qxzrYTLv1U #Kilauea
— Hawaii EMA (@Hawaii_EMA) May 14, 2018
Please be advised Highway 130 in the vicinity of Leilani Estates WILL NOT be opening to local traffic this morning as previously announced. New cracks have developed overnight. #leilaniestateseruption #kilauea #civildefense
— Hawaii EMA (@Hawaii_EMA) May 15, 2018
Eruption Update for May 15 at 1200. HVO reports a steady eruption of ash from Halemaumau Crater, causing ash to fall downwind across portions of Ka’u District. Fissure 20 opened early this morning. #mayorharrykim https://t.co/EPN28dTdb0
— Mayor Harry Kim (@MayorHarryKim) May 16, 2018
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