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Tuesday, October 3, 2023

Hawaii’s Kilauea erupts for third time this year after nearly two months of quiet

Kilauea, one of the most active volcanoes in the world, began erupting Sunday after a two-month pause, displaying glowing lava that is a safe distance from people and structures in a national park on the Big Island.

The Hawaii Volcano Observatory said the eruption was observed in the afternoon at the summit of Kilauea.

The observatory said gases released by the eruption will cause volcanic smog downwind of Kilauea. People living near the park should try to avoid volcanic particles spewed into the air by the eruption, the observatory said.

“At this time, lava at Kilauea is confined to the summit and does not pose a lava threat to communities,” Hawaii’s Emergency Management Agency wrote on social media. “However, eruptions emit volcanic particles and gases which may create breathing problems for people exposed.”

The volcano’s alert level was raised to warning status and the aviation color code went to red as scientists evaluate the eruption and associated hazards.

The Emergency Management Agency said there was “no threat to the public from lava.”

In June, Kilauea erupted for several weeks, displaying fountains of red lava without threatening any communities or structures. Crowds of people flocked to the Big Island’s Hawaii Volcanoes National Park, which offered safe views of the lava.

Kilauea, Hawaii’s second-largest volcano, erupted from September 2021 until last December. A 2018 Kilauea eruption destroyed more than 700 homes.

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