Mauna Loa spews lava for first time since 1984; flows headed in ‘best possible direction’

  • NPS Photo/J.Ibasan A view from Kupinaʻi Pali in Hawaii Volcanoes National Park Monday morning, with both the eruptions of Kilauea (left) and Mauna Loa visible.

  • This is a photo taken Monday morning from a Civil Air Patrol flight of the Northeast Rift Zone eruption of Mauna Loa.

  • This is a photo taken Monday morning from a Civil Air Patrol flight of the Northeast Rift Zone eruption of Mauna Loa.

  • Kelsey Walling/Tribune-Herald Cristen Navarro talks about the surge of customers Monday at the Naalehu gas station as people fill up their vehicles in case of a potential evacuation due to the Mauna Loa eruption.

  • Kelsey Walling/Tribune-Herald A line begins to form at the gas station Monday in Naalehu. Due to the Mauna Loa eruption, many Ka’u residents have traveled to one of the only gas stations in the district to prepare for a potential evacuation.

  • Kelsey Walling/Tribune-Herald Warren White, shelter director for the Red Cross, stands Monday in an emergency shelter set up in the Ka‘u Gymnasium in Pahala.

Officials and residents are cautiously optimistic that Mauna Loa’s first eruption in nearly 40 years will be minimally disruptive.