Published: Tue, May 15, 2018
Health Care | By Cedric Leonard

New volcanic fissure in Hawaii opens; brings total to 19

New volcanic fissure in Hawaii opens; brings total to 19

Another fissure has opened up on Hawaii's Big Island, ripping through the ground in the wake of the risky eruption of the Kilauea volcano, the Hawaiian Civil Defense said today.

"Activity was dominated by lava fountaining, explosion of spatter bombs hundreds of feet into the air, and several advancing lava flow lobes moving generally northeast from fissure 17", the USGS said in their latest report.

A series of earthquakes have rattled the Big Island since May 3, prompting the volcanic eruptions.

The Hawaiian Volcano Observatory reported the fissures opened just east of the Puna Geothermal Venture energy conversion plant, where steam and hot liquid are brought up through underground wells and the steam feeds a turbine generator to produce electricity.

It added that lava was continuing to spew from multiple points of the active fissure system.

Fissure 17, which opened over the weekend, prompted more evacuations and warnings of a possible major eruption of the volcano.

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Scientists have warned that as the lava level continues to drop in the crater, more fissures are likely to open in the ground and spew lava and toxic fumes.

The agency says one "unidentified structure" was destroyed by the new vent, bringing the total number of homes and other buildings lost to lava to almost 40.

The fissures have allowed molten rock to burst through the ground, destroying more than two dozen homes and structures and resulting in evacuation orders for nearly 2,000 people.

According to CNN, 2,000 people have been evacuated so far, and community centers are being made available to serve shelters for families and their pets.

When Hawaii's Kilauea volcano erupted on the state's Big Island earlier this month it started off pretty mild.

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