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Published: Sat, May 26, 2018
Global Media | By Abel Hampton

Workers plugging energy wells as lava flows nearby

Workers plugging energy wells as lava flows nearby

Since Kilauea's massive eruption, rivers of fire have swallowed at least 40 structures, hurled lava through cracks in the earth's surface and devastated livelihoods.

Other flare-ups from the volcano were more formidable, as blue flames burned from cracks in the pavement on Wednesday.

Lava from an active fissure nearby had flowed onto the property early this week, posing the risk of toxic gases being released in the event molten rock encroached into any of several pressurized deep-underground wells.

"It's very dramatic. It's very eerie", Jim Kauahikaua, a USGS scientist, said.

Several fissures, or cracks in the ground, are pumping out lava, as eruptions continue in Kilauea volcano's lower east side, the Hawaii County Civil Defense Agency said Wednesday.

He said it was just the second time he's ever seen blue flames during an eruption.

Hawaii officials have said they may need to evacuate a thousand more people if lava crosses key highways and isolates communities in the mostly rural part of the island where the Kilauea volcano is erupting.

Low lava fountains were erupting from a almost continuous 2-mile-long (3.22-kilometre) portion of the series of fissures that have opened up in the ground, scientists said Thursday.

The Puna power plant supplies 25 percent of the island's electricity, the daily business website Calcalist reported.

Deadly white clouds of acid and fine glass-like particles are hanging over Hawaii's Big Island as lava from the erupting Kilauea volcano flows into the ocean.

The US Marine Corps deployed two CH-53E Super Stallion helicopters to Hilo, about 24 miles north (39 miles), in support of a task force standing by in case an air evacuation is needed. The observatory said in a release that the volcano's fissures were actively expelling lava during the period in which the time-lapse footage was shot.

Lava has destroyed 50 buildings, including about two dozen homes.

This video shows activity from fissure 5 in the Leilani Estates subdivision on May 23.

One person has suffered a serious leg injury from flying lava spatter.

The preparations came as a third lava flow from Kilauea streamed into the ocean on Thursday.

But first of all, the Kilauea eruption began to pick up steam a few days ago, creating a new hazard of "toxic steam" as the red-hot rock interacts with the Pacific Ocean; and secondly, the lava changed direction.

Civil defense also indicated that the constant eruptions from crack number 22 continue to feed another risky lava channel that goes to the ocean.

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