A small explosion on the summit of Kilauea volcano has triggered an quake but there are no reports of damage.
One of the fissures in the volcano shot rock 160 feet (49 meters) up on Tuesday, slightly lower than the 180 feet (55 meters) it reached from Saturday night into Sunday, the USGS said. Scientists warn against venturing too close to where the lava is entering the ocean, saying it could expose people to dangers from flying debris. But in the past two weeks, more vigorous lava flows have poured downhill to the coast, blocking roads and destroying hundreds of homes in the Kapoho and Vacationland areas.
"Additionally, the interaction of lava with the ocean creates "laze", a corrosive seawater plume laden with hydrochloric acid and fine volcanic particles that can irritate the skin, eyes, and lungs". To date, the lava has destroyed more than 600 homes.
County Civil Defense Agency Administrator Talmadge Magno told reporters Monday that fewer workers are needed to staff a 24-hour operations center and officials are reducing checkpoints.
Lava from the Kilauea volcano continues to erupt from a fissure and forms a river of lava flowing down to Kapoho. The preliminary magnitude of the second event was 5.4. Many won't: FEMA payments generally won't cover second homes or vacation property or buildings erected without proper permits, and numerous properties in the path of the lava fall into those categories.
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He also said the federal agency doesn't have a magic wand and won't be able to make everyone whole.
The volcano has presented a myriad of hazards over its 40-day rampage across Big Island.
Eruptions on the Big Island started May 3, forcing thousands to flee their homes.
The eruption has also had a toll on the area's tourism industry, with many afraid to travel to the island.