Video shows lava spewing from Kilauea volcano

Kilauea lava flow

Two lava flows "reached the ocean along the southeast Puna coast overnight", on Hawaii's Big Island, the US Geological Survey, which monitors volcanoes and earthquakes worldwide, said in a statement May 20.

Hawaii County's Civil Defense (HCCD) agency published bulletins on Sunday asking residents living to the east of the summit to beware of "laze"-a combination of toxic hydrochloric acid fumes, steam and fine volcanic glass-like particles, which is formed when hot lava hits the ocean".

Laze is capable of producing lung, eye, and skin irritation and even death.

The lava haze called "laze" from the plume spread as far as 24km west of where the lava met the ocean on the Big Island's southern coast.

A week after scientists predicted significant shifts in Kīlauea's eruption style, those changes appear to have begun. Levels of sulfur dioxide have tripled in emissions.

At least 35 structures had been destroyed, many of them homes, officials said.

"Like typical eruptions and lava flows, it's really allowing Madam Pele to run its course", Hawaii Governor David Ige said, referring to the Hawaiian goddess of volcanoes and fire.

He was outside his home Saturday in the remote, rural region affected by the volcano when the lava "hit him on the shin and shattered everything from there down on his leg", Janet Snyder, Hawaii County mayor's spokeswoman, told the Hawaii News Now TV station.

Kilauea national guard
GETTYThe National Guard has been drafted in to secure the area

Josh Green, an emergency room physician and Democratic state senator, said he treated several patients last week - from the Pahoa evacuation center to the opposite side of Hawaii island in Hawi - for symptoms related to the eruption.

Officials say a small eruption at the Kilauea volcano summit, produced an ash plume that reached about 7,000 feet.

The gas clouds initially appear on the shoreline, but trade winds on Sunday carried plumes about 15 miles (24 kilometres) to the southwest.

To protect the public from this hazard, the local authorities have closed off access to oceanfront Highway 137 on either side of the lava flow. When mixed with cool sea water, the lava produces an acid steam called "laze" into the air.

Over the weekend the lava began to move more quickly and emerge from the ground in greater volumes.

"Most of them (lava bombs) arc high in the air, but every now and again there's one that gets shot like a rifle, more horizontal and that's what happened here", he said. About 2000 people have evacuated their homes, including 300 who were staying in shelters.

The injury came the same day that lava began streaming across a highway and flowing into the ocean. The volcano has opened more than 20 vents, including four that have merged into one large crack.

"We've seen Phase 1". The tourism industry is still in full swing, and the island's airports remain open.

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