Lava flow stalls, sparing Hawaii geothermal plant from more damage


The continuous flow of lava and the fissures that are erupting from the Kilauea volcano were captured in the latest aerial shots by the Hawaii Army National Guard. The well was successfully plugged in anticipation of the lava flow, and a second well 100 feet away has also been secured, according to the report.

Officials previously moved 50,000 gallons of potentially toxic gas offsite and capped the wells on the property to prevent releases of additional gas if lava enters the wells.

This video, from the USGS, shows lava erupt from the seventh fissure on May 27.

Lava from the Kilauea volcano oozed over two wells at a geothermal power plant on Hawaii's Big Island, but county officials say the flow has stopped.

The lava has reportedly destroyed at least 82 structures and displaced thousands of people.

The U.S. Geological Survey's Hawaii Volcano Observatory described the eruption from the East Rift Zone as "vigorous".

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While eruptions continue at the main crater, Kilauea's lava flows have also proven extremely unsafe for bystanders and residents who refused to evacuate. A family friend shot photos of the home as a wall of lava advanced and as fire claimed the property.

"For me, it's just visual, " he said. About 2,000 people have fled their homes.

Since Kilauea volcano began a once-in-a-century-scale eruption on May 3, the authorities have shut down the plant, removed more than 200,000 litres of flammable liquid and deactivated wells that tap into steam and gas deep in the Earth's core.

Meanwhile, lava flows continue to cascade into the ocean in lower Puna near MacKenzie State Park, creating plumes of "laze" - clouds of gas and shards of glass - that could force nearby residents to evacuate at a moment's notice.

Scientists believe the volcanic activity may be a precursor to a major eruption similar to the one that shook the island in the mid-1920s.