LavaTalk: September 4, 2014 update on Kilauea’s lava flow

Hawaii County Civil Defense Eruption Update, 11:30 a.m. September 4, 2014

Mayor Kenoi declares State of Emergency proclamation

Hawai‘i County Mayor Billy Kenoi today signed an emergency proclamation for the advancing lava flow in the Wao Kele O Puna area after the flow extended to less than a mile from the edge of the Ka‘ohe Homesteads subdivision.

“We are taking this step to ensure our residents have time to prepare their families, their pets, and their livestock for a safe and orderly evacuation from Ka‘ohe in the event the flow continues to advance,” Mayor Kenoi said.

Hawai‘i County Civil Defense Administrator Darryl Oliveira said the proclamation allows county authorities to restrict access to Ka‘ohe Homestead roadways so that residents can move safely if an evacuation becomes necessary.

Oliveira stressed that no evacuation has been ordered at this time. He urged residents to finalize their evacuation plans and monitor county Civil Defense updates closely in the days ahead.

Civil Defense employees will continue today to conduct door-to-door visits to each home in Ka‘ohe to explain the situation to residents, and to help them to prepare.

“Only residents will be allowed on the subdivision roads starting today, and we ask that non-residents stay away from the area,” Oliveira said. “The lava cannot be seen from the subdivision, and there is no reason for non-residents to be in the Ka‘ohe subdivision at this time. This is a difficult and stressful time for Ka‘ohe residents, and we ask that everyone show respect and understanding for our Ka‘ohe neighbors.”

Hawai‘i County Civil Defense and the Hawaiian Volcano Observatory are holding a series of public meetings to update residents on the lava flow in the Wao Kele O Puna area, and the next update will be at 6:30 p.m. today, Sept. 4 at the Pahoa High School Cafeteria.

PDF of Emergency Proclamation

USGS/HVO VOLCANO ALERT LEVEL WARNING Issued: Thursday, September 4, 2014, 10:45 a.m. HST

Volcanic Activity Summary: On June 27, 2014, new vents opened on the northeast flank of the Pu‘u ‘O‘o cone that fed a narrow lava flow to the east-northeast. On August 18, the flow entered a ground crack, traveled underground for several days, then resurfaced to form a small lava pad. The sequence was repeated twice more over the following days with lava entering other cracks and reappearing farther downslope. In this way, the flow had advanced approximately 13.2 km (8.2 miles) from the vent, or to within 1.3 km (0.8 miles) of the eastern boundary of the Wao Kele o Puna Forest Reserve, by the afternoon of September 3. Overnight, lava did not appear to advance farther east within the crack system, but surface flows advanced about 100 m to the northeast. At the average rate of advancement of 250 m/day (820 ft/day) since July 10, we project that lava could reach the Kaohe Homesteads boundary within 5-7 days should lava resume advancing within the crack system.

Kaohe Homesteads is located between the Wao Kele o Puna Forest Reserve and the town of Pāhoa in the Puna District of the County of Hawai`i.


Update video of Kilauea lava flow in Puna (9/3/14)

The June 27th lava flow remains active, with lava at the flow front issuing from a ground crack and advancing through thick forest, creating dense plumes of smoke. The farthest lava this afternoon was 13.2 km (8.2 miles) from the vent on Puʻu ʻŌʻō, and 1.3 km (0.8 miles) from the eastern boundary of the Wao Kele o Puna forest reserve. This forest reserve boundary is at the western boundary of Kaohe Homesteads subdivision, a portion of which is visible at the bottom of the photograph. Photo taken Wednesday, September 3, 2014 courtesy of USGS/HVO

The June 27th lava flow remains active, with lava at the flow front issuing from a ground crack and advancing through thick forest, creating dense plumes of smoke. The farthest lava this afternoon was 13.2 km (8.2 miles) from the vent on Puʻu ʻŌʻō, and 1.3 km (0.8 miles) from the eastern boundary of the Wao Kele o Puna forest reserve. This forest reserve boundary is at the western boundary of Kaohe Homesteads subdivision, a portion of which is visible at the bottom of the photograph. Photo taken Wednesday, September 3, 2014 courtesy of USGS/HVO

This is a civil defense message.

This is an Eruption and Lava Flow Information Update for Thursday September 4th at 8:30AM.

Daily helicopter over flights and assessments are continuing. This morning’s helicopter assessment shows the surface lava flow continues and is moving very slowly in a east/northeast direction. The surface flow has advanced less than 100 yards since yesterday. There continues to be some evidence of subsurface flow activity with noted by steam plumes being emitted from the crack system. The surface flow is moving very slowly and does not pose an immediate threat to area residents. The surface flow is located approximately .8 miles southwest or upslope of the Wao Kele Puna Forest Reserve boundary and moving in an east/northeast direction.

Presently, the current activities and flow does not present with an immediate or imminent threat to area communities. Eruption activity will continue to be monitored and additional updates will be provided.

Although the current flow activity does not pose an immediate threat to area communities, residents are encouraged to continue to review their emergency plans in the event conditions change and should an evacuation be necessary.

The public is reminded that the flow cannot be accessed and is not visible from any public areas. Please do not attempt to access the area as there are many cracks and dense vegetation. In addition please refrain from attempting to do so through the Kaohe Homesteads subdivision and respect the privacy of area residents. Enforcement officers of the State Department of Land and Natural Resources will be conducting patrols and reminding persons in the area of the restricted access.

USGS/HVO Kilauea Status Update for Thursday, September 4, 2014

June 27th Lava Flow Observations: The June 27th lava flow remains active. An HVO overflight yesterday afternoon observed lava issuing onto the surface from a ground crack, and moving slowly through thick forest. A steaming ground crack extended a short distance east of this lava, suggesting that lava is also continuing to move beneath the surface along ground cracks. The most distant active lava on the surface was approximately 13.2 km (8.2 miles) from the vent and 1.3 km (0.8 miles) from the eastern boundary of the Wao Kele o Puna Forest Reserve. See map link above for yesterday’s flow field map.

A civil defense overflight this morning observed continued activity at the front of the June 27th flow, with flows continuing to advance slowly in an east-northeast direction.

Small breakouts also remain active closer to Puʻu ʻŌʻō, roughly midway along the length of the June 27th flow. None of these breakouts were very vigorous when observed on yesterday’s overflight, and there was no significant change overnight based on webcam views. Some of these breakouts are also creeping into the forest and producing smoke plumes.

Lava Flow Update Community Meetings

Hawai’i County Civil Defense and the Hawaiian Volcano Observatory will host additional community meetings to update residents on the lava flow in the Wao Kele O Puna area.

  • 6:30 p.m. Thursday, September 4, 2014

The briefings will be held at the Pahoa High School Cafeteria.


View Pahoa High School Cafeteria in a larger map

HAWAII ISLAND HUMANE SOCIETY

Unpredictable lava flows in the Puna District have seemingly stalled, however they remind us that upfront planning now can ease stressful situations should there be a need to evacuate. As Benjamin Franklin once said, “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.”

The Hawaii Island Humane Society has a few tips to help keep animals safe in the event of an evacuation:

HIHS encourages all pet owners to be safe and prepared. If you are advised to evacuate, please consider your pet’s safety. Do not leave animals behind.

Develop a plan for their ongoing care including transportation arrangements.

Larger animals including horses and livestock may need to be moved well in advance. Call friends or family members to locate alternate pastures.

Gather items for your pet’s emergency kit –

  • Crate
  • Leash
  • Food
  • Water
  • Towel
  • Identification
  • Medication (if applicable)

If you evacuate, arrive at your destination prepared with your pet’s emergency kit and take your pets!

The mission of the Hawaii Island Humane Society is to promote respect for all animals, prevent cruelty to animals, eliminate pet overpopulation, and enhance the bond between humans and animals. HIHS holds a contract with the County of Hawaii to enforce certain animal-related laws and it offers 24-hour service for injured animals and other animal emergencies, humane education classes, low-cost spay and neuter services, lost and found assistance, micro-chipping and more.

For further information, call 808-329-1175 or visit www.hihs.org

HelpPuna.com Helps Animal Evacuation

The June 27 lava flow poses a threat to farms and homes in the Puna area near Pahoa. Since this flow is in an agricultural area, it also threatens farm animals such as chickens, ducks, sheep, goats, horses, pigs, in addition to dogs and cats.

All these animals would need to be evacuated in the event of an approaching lava flow. As people prepare for possible evacuation, they need to prepare and plan for evacuating their livestock and pets, too.

Finding accommodations for displaced people and their animals could become a major challenge as this lava flow continues. H.E.L.P. Puna is providing a free website service for residents who need to find places to protect their animals, and other residents in safe areas who wish to offer their properties as “Places of Refuge”.

H.E.L.P. is the Hawaii Evacuation of Livestock and Pets, a program of the Good Shepherd Foundation, a nonprofit organization with an animal sanctuary in Opihikao, not far from the lava flow.

Everyone is invited to offer their property as a haven from the lava flow for any livestock and pets they can accommodate. Some will be willing to accept only certain types of animals, such as dogs or cats. Others may have large fenced pastures or yards where they can take horses, sheep, or goats. Still others may have small backyards where they can only take chickens.

Those offering their places as refuges can do so for free or for a fee. It is between the parties to decide all financial issues and ensure there is a good fit.

We also invite those with animal trailers to offer their services on this website. Some people will need help moving their animals.

— Find out more:
www.HelpPuna.com

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