Boat ramp remains despite ocean entry, delta at Pohoiki

  • USGS photo This aerial shot of the fissure 8 ocean entry and laze plume, with the Pohoiki boat ramp is visible just below the plume, was taken Tuesday, shortly after sunrise.

A minor ocean entry of lava near Pohoiki appeared Tuesday to accompany the wider lava ocean entry, centered at the site of the former Ahalanui Park.

According to Janet Snyder, spokeswoman for Mayor Harry Kim, the Pohoiki ocean entry was “building a delta.” She said there was oozing along the western edge of the lava flow front inside Isaac Hale Beach Park, but Pohoiki boat ramp was “still there.” The lava remained about 500 feet from the ramp, Snyder said.

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Fissure 8, the most active fissure since the current eruptive phase began May 3 in Kilauea volcano’s lower East Rift Zone, continued to produce lava, Snyder said.

A collapse explosion occurred at 7:59 a.m. Tuesday at the volcano’s summit. The event created energy equivalent to a magnitude-5.3 earthquake, according to Hawaiian Volcano Observatory.

The State Highways Division reported no new cracks on Highway 11 after the collapse explosion event at Halema‘uma‘u crater.

Between mile markers 28 and 32, motorists are advised to stay on the pavement, be alert for changing road conditions, and drive with caution. Motorcyclists and bicyclists are advised to proceed with extreme caution.

In addition, a 4.5-magnitude earthquake occurred at 12:30 a.m. Tuesday at the summit, according to HVO. No damage was reported.

The Disaster Recovery Center is now at the Pahoa Community Center. It’s open 8 a.m.-6 p.m. weekdays and 8 a.m.-4 p.m. Saturdays. As of Monday, 2,486 individuals on Hawaii Island had registered for disaster assistance from the Federal Emergency Management Agency, with $5,096,906 in funding approved.

The U.S. Senate on Tuesday passed legislation authored by Hawaii Sen. Brian Schatz to help Hawaii Island assess the damage suffered by farmers and ranchers during the ongoing eruption.

The amendment, included in a bipartisan spending package, will help aid the response and recovery effort by instructing the U.S. Department of the Agriculture to evaluate the damage the eruptions caused to agricultural production and rural infrastructure. The legislation also asks USDA to work with state and county officials on how to rebuild and support local farmers and ranchers.

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“My legislation will help us understand how the ongoing eruptions have hurt agriculture production on the island and what we can do to fix it,” said Schatz, a member of the Senate Appropriations Committee, in a statement.

Email John Burnett at jburnett@hawaiitribune-herald.com.

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