Hawaii volcano eruption: Damage in pictures

Senate aims to improve volcano warning system

Here's the latest for Thursday, May 17th: Robert Mueller is one year into the Russian Federation probe; President Donald Trump is casting doubt on trade agreement with China; Congo's Ebola outbreak is spreading; Hawaii's Kilauea volcano erupted from summit. This legislation improves the nation's volcano monitoring and early warning capabilities and strengthens existing monitoring systems, including the Cascades Volcano Observatory in Washington state and OR, to help keep communities and travelers safe.

"Geologists say the quakes are being caused by the ongoing deflation at the summit and as lava levels continue to decline".

"This event is far from over", said Talmadge Magno, civil defense administrator for Hawaii County.

Thursday's eruption did not affect the Big Island's two largest airports in Hilo and in Kailua-Kona.

Fissure No. 17 northeast of Lanipuna Gardens was active but with less lava being added to the flow, said Steve Brantley, deputy scientist-in-charge at Hawaii Volcano Observatory.

N95 masks do not protect against gases and vapors, the county said.

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Scientists can not say why the eruption is happening now, given that Kilauea has been active for 35 years.

The masks will be handed out from 1 p.m.to 7 p.m. Officials warn they won't protect against gases and vapors.

Earlier it was reported that in Hawaii declared the highest alert level due to increased eruption of Kilauea volcano.

Kevin Kushel, a resident of the island, told AFP that Thursday's plume of smoke could be seen miles away.

Some schools are closed following the explosion but there have been no additional evacuations.

Aloha Junction Bed and Breakfast owner Robert Hughes says there were a few small earthquakes Wednesday but he heard nothing Thursday when the volcano erupted.

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Despite the volcanic activity, Hoyt said most people on the island are going about their day as normal. "The resulting ash plume will cover the surrounding area", wrote the Hawaii Defense Agency on social media. An Ashfall Advisory means that ash accumulation of less than a quarter of an inch is expected on boats. "I hope the House of Representatives will move quickly to approve this timely legislation so that we can ensure the U.S. Geological Survey has the resources it needs to strengthen our monitoring, warning, and response capabilities".

"We've had reports of light ash fall in Hawaii's Volcanoes National Park and we expect that folks may be experiencing trace ash fall around Volcano Village", Michelle Coombs, a volcanologist at the US Geological Survey, told reporters at a daily briefing.

It comes after more than a dozen fissures recently opened miles to the east of the crater and spewed lava into neighbourhoods.

This volcanic activity destroyed at least 26 homes and displaced thousands of residents.

USGS officials said last week they expected the possibility of steam-driven explosions at Kilauea.

Kilauea, one of the world's most active volcanoes, has been erupting continuously since 1983. Its last explosive eruption took place in 1924.

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