Lava enters PGV property

  • This is an aerial view of erupting fissure 22 and lava channels flowing southward from the fissure during an early morning overflight. View is toward the southwest. USGS photo courtesy of Volcano Helicopters.

A small lava flow from fissure No. 22 has entered the Puna Geothermal Venture property.

According to Janet Snyder, a spokeswoman for Mayor Harry Kim, the flow is moving in the opposite direction from the flows that are entering the ocean.

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“The flow moved northwest toward the well pad at PGV but it stalled at a berm somewhere,” Snyder said. She said the flow is stalled between 200 and 300 meters from the geothermal powerplant itself.

“According to state Civil Defense, we are in the final stages of quenching two of the three PGV wells: KS 9 and KS 6,” Snyder said. “We have had difficulties quenching the third well, KS 14, which has led us to evaluate alternate procedures to kill the well. Preparations are being made to do that.”

Snyder said two flows continue to enter the ocean off Highway 137 near MacKenzie State Recreation Area in lower Puna.

“The lava is expanding, width-wise, but the advance is slowing down,” Snyder said.

The county Department of Water Supply reports that their main water line servicing Kapoho has been overrun by lava on Kapoho road.

“DWS is trying to outfit an old, abandoned well that has been unused for at least 25 years,” Snyder said. She said there’s no time frame on when that project might be completed. She said DWS has taken water samples from the well and send it to a state lab to ensure that it’s safe to drink.

A new roadblock is in place at the corner of Kamaili Road and Highway 137, Snyder said. Pohoiki Road and Lanipuna Gardens subdivision have been cut off.

Civil Defense also reports more structures have been destroyed by the lava from Kilauea volcano.

According to Snyder, the number of structures consumed in the latest eruptive event isn’t exactly known, but said the total number of structures that have fallen victim to lava is “up to 47.”

Information wasn’t available on the location of the latest structures that have fallen victim to the molten rock.

Hawaiian Volcano Observatory also reported that another explosive eruption took place at the Kilauea summit at 12:55 a.m. The resulting ash plume might affect the surrounding areas. The wind may carry the ash plume to the southwest toward Wood Valley, Pahala, Naalehu and Waiohinu.

The danger from this eruption is ash fallout. Residents are advised to protect yourself from fallout. If you are at home, stay indoors with the windows closed. Turn on your radio and listen for updates from authorities.

If you are in your car, keep the windows closed. Ash fallout may cause poor driving conditions, due to limited visibility and slippery driving conditions. Drive with extreme caution, or pull over and park.

After the hazard has passed, do check your home, and especially your catchment system for any impact that may affect your water quality.

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Due to hazardous conditions from lava and fires, the following policies are in effect, according to Hawaii County Civil Defense:

  • Highway 137 is closed to all traffic between Kamaili Road and Pohoiki Road.
  • Kamaili Road is closed to all through traffic. No stopping, this is a high sulfur dioxide area.
  • Everyone is asked to stay out of the area.

Due to the lava entry at the ocean, the following policies are in effect:

  • Access to the area is prohibited due to the laze hazard.
  • Stay away from any ocean plume. The plume travels with the wind and can change direction without warning.
  • The U.S. Coast Guard is actively monitoring the area. Only permitted tour boats are allowed in the area.

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