Kilauea Volcano Area Sees 500 Earthquakes in 24-hours

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A river of lava spewing from the foot of Hawaii's Kilauea Volcano swallowed about three dozen more homes on the Big Island during a weekend of destruction, officials said.

Kilauea volcano is near-constantly erupting from vents either on its summit (caldera) or on the rift zones.

"We don't have an estimate yet, but safe to say that hundreds of homes were lost in Kapoho Beach Lots and Vacationland last night", said Janet Snyder, a spokeswoman for Hawaii County on the Big Island.

The site marked the latest challenge facing authorities during what geologists call an unprecedented, simultaneous eruption at Kilauea's summit and from giant fissures 25 miles (40 km) down its eastern side. The lava produced a massive cloud of steam when it reached the ocean at Kapoho Bay on Monday. "A Hawaiian County Fire Department overflight reported that the lava filled the lake and apparently evaporated all the water", the report said.

Sgt. Gavin Ching of the Hawaii National Guard monitors sulfur dioxide gas levels near a lava flow on Highway 132 in Pahoa during ongoing eruptions of the Kilauea Volcano in Hawaii, U.S., June 3, 2018.

One of more than a dozen fissures in the earth's crust caused by the quake, Fissure 8, continues to feed a half-mile-wide lava flow toward the ocean at a rate of 250 feet per hour, the USGS said Sunday. Officials warned residents in the area to be ready to evacuate with little notice.

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Hawaii Civil Defense spokesman Talmadge Mango said Friday that at least 87 buildings have been destroyed since the Kilauea volcano erupted on May 3.

No injuries were reported in the area because it was evacuated.

There have been various arrests of people forcing their way through blocked areas. "This is something most of us will never see in our lifetime", he said.

This combines a toxic steam, known as laze - combining the words lava and haze - and contains tiny particles of volcanic gas.

The suspect was later charged with Refusing to Evacuate, Obstructing Government Operations, Resisting Order to Stop Motor Vehicle, Reckless Driving, and two counts of Reckless Endangering in the 2nd degree.

The monthlong eruption has claimed as much as a half of a forest reserve that's home to native birds and trees that have already been declining because of disease, state officials said.