Hawaii volcano simmers ominously, experts warn it could blow again

Hawaii volcano simmers ominously, experts warn it could blow again (Source Reuters) Hawaii residents drove through clouds of sulfur and over roads splitting open to make desperate and possibly last visits home before another eruption by Kilauea volcano, which has already destroyed 35 homes and other structures. The explosions from Kilauea, which began five days ago, paused on Tuesday long enough for many of the roughly 1,700 people ordered to flee their homes in the hardest-hit Leilani Estates area to rush back in for pets or cherished belongings they were forced to leave behind. “The way it looks now, I thought I’d try one more time to get my things out,” U.S. Army veteran Delance Weigel, 71, said while collecting some of his prized possessions shortly after 7 a.m. on Tuesday as steam and sulfur dioxide gas rose out of cracks in the street. “Whether we lose our home or not, we’ll see. But we’re definitely going to be cut off,” Weigel said. So far, no deaths or major injuries have been reported since Kilauea, which has been in a state of nearly constant eruption since 1983, began a series of major explosions on Thursday, spewing fountains of lava as high as 300 feet (90 meters) into the air and spewing deadly volcanic gas up through cracks in the earth. Kilauea predominantly pours basaltic lava flows into the ocean, but occasionally experiences more explosive events such as the one that began last week. Most of the 1,700 residents ordered to evacuate live in Leilani Estates, where lava has been bubbling out of some 2.5 miles of fissures in the ground emanating from Kilauea lava tunnels on the eastern side of the Big Island. Homeowners in another community, Lanipuna Gardens, were required to leave because of toxic volcanic gases.

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