Dramatic developments at Kilauea Volcano: Scientists work to keep public safe and informed

Mar 27, 2008

Explosive eruptions and noxious gas emissions at Kilauea Volcano in Hawaii this week have prompted scientists to work around the clock to understand what will happen next and how to keep the public out of harm’s way.

Scientists are monitoring gas emissions and seismic activity at Kilauea, which on March 19 experienced its first explosive eruption since 1924. The volcano is also emitting sulfur dioxide at toxic levels.

The National Park Service has closed Crater Rim Drive through the south caldera area until further notice. The U.S. Geological Survey is issuing frequent updates, which can be accessed at hvo.wr.usgs.gov/kilauea/.

Sulfur dioxide emissions at the volcano’s summit have increased to a rate that is likely to be hazardous for areas downwind of Halema'uma'u crater. Future explosions from Halema'uma'u Crater are possible.

“This historic activity has created new hazards that did not exist before — explosive eruptions as well as toxic sulfur dioxide emissions — in the middle of a national park,” said U.S. Geological Survey Volcano Hazards Program Coordinator John Eichelberger. “Our job is to give emergency responders and the civil defense community the very best information we can provide about what the volcano is doing and what it is likely to do in the future.”

Source: United States Geological Survey

Explore further: 2014 Antarctic ozone hole holds steady

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Under Rainier's crater, a natural laboratory like no other

Oct 03, 2014

Counting all the ups and downs, he had climbed more than 15,000 feet to get here - past yawning crevasses and over cliffs where a single misstep could send a rope team tumbling. His party was pummeled by a lightning storm ...

Climate engineering can't erase climate change

Jun 02, 2014

Tinkering with climate change through climate engineering isn't going to help us get around what we have to do says a new report authored by researchers at six universities, including Simon Fraser University.

Recommended for you

2014 Antarctic ozone hole holds steady

17 hours ago

The Antarctic ozone hole reached its annual peak size on Sept. 11, according to scientists from NASA and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). The size of this year's hole was 24.1 million ...

User comments : 0

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.