Kilauea threatens Hawaii but is less deadly than other types of volcanoes

Senate aims to improve volcano warning system

"Volcanic eruptions, like the one in Hawaii and the one earlier this month at Cleveland Volcano in Alaska, are vivid reminders of why it is so critical to have continuous and reliable monitoring systems", Murkowski said.

Lava illuminates volcanic gases (L) from the Kilauea volcano near fissure 13 on Hawaii's Big Island on May 16 - the summit of the volcano erupted on Thursday.

At a press conference, U.S. Geological Survey volcanologist Michelle Coombs said this is one of the biggest volcanic eruptions they've ever seen. She said the ashfall was localized.

"I'm not too anxious about it because I've lived here so long and I've seen it go through lots of different episodes", Hughes said. "I mean, I expected there would at least be one of the bigger earthquakes just before, or a boom or something". He told CBS4's Kelly Werthmann via FaceTime he left from the Colorado Springs airport Tuesday afternoon.

An employee of a lodge near an erupting volcano on Hawaii's Big Island worries about the impact on tourism.

Staff from the Hawaii Volcanoes National Park were evacuated and officials warned residents in the path of the ash plume to shelter in place.

Scientists say more explosions are possible, but it's not known when they could occur.

The Federal Aviation Administration is prohibiting aircraft from entering airspace up to 30,000 feet (9,100 meters) in the sky above the summit crater of Hawaii's Kilauea volcano after it erupted ash high into the air.

"Like back home in Colorado when there's a wildfire, there's always people who are wondering what's happening to their house", he said. He explained from time to time he can feel the rumblings from the active volcano.




On May 4, Hawaii's Big Island was hit by a magnitude 6.9 natural disaster, the most powerful to hit the island since 1975.

"Just a little while ago we had something that sounded like thunder", Hoyt said. It looked like it was a steam and ash plume.

Volcanic smog - known as "vog" - is now being emitted by the fissures, traveling toward populated areas and threatening residents with unsafe sulfur dioxide.

Officials on Hawaii's Big Island will be handing out free masks to protect people from breathing volcanic ash. "We also have masks if needed and have a safe place for people to be".

The eruption stemmed from the Kilauea volcano's summit, and the plume is expected to cover the surrounding area.

Fenix Grange of the state Department of Health said 10 new air quality monitors have been installed "circling the rift areas".

U.S. Geological Survey geophysicist Mike Poland says the explosion likely only lasted a few minutes. That said, he is happy is there to help those in need.

On Thursday, a 21st fissure also opened in Leilani Estates while other fissures reactivated with lava, the Hawaii Civil Defense said in an alert.

Hawaii Volcanoes National Park's decision to close Friday due to the risk of an explosive eruption will discourage travelers, said Janet Coney, the office manager at Kilauea Lodge, an inn in Volcano.

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