Lava fountain inside Kilauea reaches nearly 100 feet high

Kilauea volcano continues putting on a show.

The western vent inside Halemaʻumaʻu crater in Hawaii Volcanoes National Park had sustained lava fountain heights of 33-49 feet (10-15 meters) on Tuesday, with variable heights up to 98 feet (30 meters), according to the Hawaiian Volcano Observatory.

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Since the volcano began erupting on Sept. 29, the lava lake inside the crater has risen about 138 feet. It rose about 7 feet on Tuesday.

The total volume of lava since the beginning of the eruption was estimated to be about 4.2 billion gallons on Oct. 8.

All lava activity is confined within the crater, and seismicity and volcanic gas emission rates remain elevated.

No unusual activity has been noted in the East Rift Zone. Ground deformation motion suggests that the upper East Rift Zone — between the summit and PuʻuʻOʻo — has been steadily refilling with magma over the past year.

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As SO2 is released from the summit, it reacts in the atmosphere to create the visible haze known as vog (volcanic smog) that has been observed downwind of Kilauea.

Vog creates the potential for airborne health hazards to residents and visitors, damages agricultural crops and other plants, and affects livestock.