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  • Erruption

    4 yrs. ago Pahoa town was threaten with lava flow, luckily it stopped short of the town and homes. Now the Puna district is being threaten with lava again, it started with hundreds of earthquakes and the roads were cracking then the lava started spewing out of the fissures in the Leilani Estate subdivision. This subdivision is located below Pahoa town, to-date 26 homes in the Leilani Estate subdivision were burned. The people were given 20 minutes to evacuate on Thursday, the lava slowed down today-Sunday so civil defense is letting the residence go back in to retrieve their belongings. The wind was blowing in the right direction so the toxic gas was being blown out of the subdivision. The people were told they could not stay in their homes b/c of the toxic fumes might come back if the wind shifts, just get your stuff and leave. Sad to see the people lose their homes & belongings, now when your property is engulfed with lave you cannot go back to rebuild, they lost everything. Our volcano has been active for over 30 + yrs now, you just never know where it'll pop up. Say a prayer for the people from Leilani Estate, MAHALO.

  • #2
    Definitely prayers for all those affected. This is very scary for all those in the area. The lava alone is like nothing I've ever experienced, and the toxic gases must be truly frightening.

    At this moment, I'm listening to NPR's "On-Point" with a story of the volcano, lava, and gases. It's very interesting and the people there are bravely facing a lot of unknowns. I'm thinking that my biggest complaints about living here in Binghamton, NY is the occasional crime and people letting their dogs crap on my lawn.... guess a bit a dog pooh, sure beats lava flowing through my lot, destroying everything.

    Fortunately, I haven't heard of any deaths there... and let us all pray that lives are spared and hopefully this disaster will soon settle down.

    Think it Through Before You Do!


    • #3
      There are 20 total fissures now, it subsided for awhile then restarted. Another subdivision had to be evacuated b/c of fissures spewing lava and toxic gases. It's appearing just like Pop a Mole. I live in Hilo on the east side so we don't get any of the fumes. I haven't felt anymore earthquakes since Saturday but, they're still having lots of small quakes in the Puna area. The Puna district is in Lava Zone 1 the most likely area to have an eruption, see map. There has been a lot of tourist cancelling their trip here, no need to do that, it's still safe, just stay away from the lower Puna district , Pahoa town and Kalapana beach area. The Volcano National Park is open now so you can see into the crater from the lookout, the lava level has gone way down as it's feeding the fissures 35 miles away. The other districts on my island are safe, the West side might get some VOG (smoke) from the eruption as the winds are blowing south west. Sulfur dioxide gases are only at the immediate eruption sites, then the winds dissipates it as it blows south to the ocean.

      Sad for the people but, when interviewed on the news they said it was always on the back of their minds that this could happen one day. They bought the land cheap and took the gamble that it won't erupt in their life time. Well, they lost, sad that some of them have no insurance or very little insurance. They will have a long road to recovery. So far everyone has been cool, no looting has happened, thanks to the Police and National Guard securing the roads in & out of the area. They're just letting the residents go in to retrieve items from their homes if it's safe.

      cwsmith, thanks for your prayers.

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      • #4
        I recall that my late Grandparents visited the islands back in the 60's or 70's and at the time there was some minor volcanic activity. Both of them were rather adventurous even in their late 70's, IIRC. I lost an Uncle on the Oklahoma, and I my Grandparents had saved for quite some time to visit the Memorial. There was no way my Grandmother was going to be kept away by a volcano. I remember how beautiful she recall "the islands... even the volcano!".

        Even paradise has it's devilish side. I hope it all settles down soon so as to lessen the loss for as many as possible. I suppose such things aren't always predictable, but it does make me wonder how and why people are permitted to build in areas that may be prone to this kind of activity.

        Then again, I look around and see that when it comes to real estate ventures, there's always those who are willing to promote and those that are willing to buy. Here we have people and businesses who build and rebuild on historic flood plains, and of course the coastal regions seem to be all too quick to promote seashore living.

        Thanks for posting the picture and map, I keep watching this story on the news and hope everyone will be as safe as possible,

        Think it Through Before You Do!


        • #5
          Originally posted by cwsmith View Post
          ... I suppose such things aren't always predictable, but it does make me wonder how and why people are permitted to build in areas that may be prone to this kind of activity.
          Where would anyone build that isn't subject to some type of natural diaster? Fires, floods, blizzards, hurricanes, tornados, earthquakes etc. It's a matter of picking where you want/need to live and accepting the associated risks. Earth can be very inhospitable, but for the foreseeable futrure it's all we have.

          My thoughts and prayers are with everyone affected by this. Hopefully they'll be able to recover and move on as best possible under the circumstances.

          An ethical man knows the right thing to do.
          A moral man does it.


          • #6
            Where would anyone build that isn't subject to some type of natural diaster?

            While there are lots of places one could pick to live, there is too often I think, certain places that just don't make much sense in the long run. Take for example the North Carolina coast. I took my first solo vacation there in 1965. I had recently purchased a new VW and decided to visit my relatives in NC. Often went there with my parents when I was young, but that was always a long drive from NY to Enfield, NC where we'd stay with Grandma a few days and then drive back.

            So, with a new car I decided to go on my own in mid-October of '65; and one of my Uncle and I drove out to see Kittyhawk and drive down to the southern tip of the shoals. Pretty neat and I was impressed with how barren it was with it's huge dunes and no population at that time of the year. At Nags Head, we later stopped for supper and I commented on how beautiful the shoals were and it's lack of any population. One older fellow remarked that "only a **** fool" would try to stay on the shoals in the winter months because of the storms. Fact was noted that as we drove down the shoals the telephone poles were at varying heights... explanation was that they sank into the sand. Also noted at one place where there was a bridge sitting all by it's lonesome, about two-hundred yards inshore from the two-lane road. I guess a decade early that was where the highway had been. The shoals shifted all the times and off the Carolina shoals there are more shipwrecks than anywhere else in North America.

            So, that was in 1965. Since then the entire area is strung with homes and tourist lodging. Big money investments, and every so often the storms come in and wipes out a good share. It's like that in many places I think. Florida, perhaps the most note worthy. The whole peninsula is one big sandy swamp, good for snakes and alligators... that is up to the 50's. Now it's everybody's paradise. But the snakes and alligators are still there, along with fire ants, paint-eating African snails, and pythons bigger than I wish to imagine. And of course some massive storms and in recent discussion sink holes.

            Problem is that man-kind will make what ever they want out of whatever conditions there may be. The old guy I met in 1965 was right, "only a **** fool" would live in some places; but then that pretty much sums up what makes "civilization" what it is... we'll make our place anywhere we so choose.

            Now me, I live here in NY's southern tier. Place is in industrial and economic decay. But it is where I grew up and where the last few generations of my ancestors lived. Once a gem of the Northeast with all it's industry, the place isn't what it once was. BUT, we have no volcano's, no earthquakes, no mudslides, no forest fires, and no hyper droughts. Snow isn't terrible, nor are summers in the overwhelming 100's for long long periods By no means perfect, and the occasional river flooding isn't overwhelming unless one decides to live on the well known flood plains. All in all the condition are such to be fairly easy to deal with.

            Think it Through Before You Do!


            • #7
              Where would anyone build that isn't subject to some type of natural diaster?
              That certainly figured into my choice of location. We really just don't have any here in my part of AZ. We never have power outages either. No snow, no floods, not enough stuff for a fire, etc. Decent weather year-round. Boring I guess.


              • #8
                Yuuup! Threw common sense & local knowledge out the window! All the States/people living close to Yellowstone National Park are next to a potential Super Volcano.
                Couple years ago my cousin came to visit me, he had a property in Leilani Estate subdivision that he bought many years ago and was thinking of building an investment home there. I took him out there with his contractor, of course the contractor was pressing my cousin to build. After we were alone, I told my cousin that it wasn't a good place to build b/c of the volcano. The volcano flowed lava down to Pahoa town 18 months earlier so, insurance companies were not issuing new Home/fire policies in that area. In Hawaii you need Homeowners/fire insurance to build. Lucky he listened to me and didn't build. The 1st day it erupted in Leilani estates, I texted him and he was surprised and happy he didn't build.
                We're getting rain now and it's creating another problem. When the rain drops go through the smoke/toxic gas it creates acid rain. Acid rain starts to eat/damage anything metal, if you don't have a covered carport/garage, your vehicle's paint will get damaged. Trucks frame between the cab & bed rust out. It contaminate the water in the peoples catchment tanks. Lot of the homes in the Puna district depends on rain for their water source, very limited city water service out there.


                • #9
                  Yeah, I'm gonna stop whining about dealing with the occasional coyote, snake, or Gila Monster.


                  • #10
                    500 + homes lost and still counting. Kapoho bay filled up with lava, lots of ocean front homes lost, some of them over a Million $$$. FEMA finally stepped in but might not cover vacation homes & rental homes. They will reimburse State & County for emergency services rendered. Our county council had to raise our sales taxes by 1/4% to help with property taxes lost. We will have a lot of homeless people in the near future. I'm unaffected by the eruption In Hilo, we have experienced some VOG when the wind shifts we get a rotten egg odor. The deadly gases are at the immediate eruption site only so it's not a concern for the rest of the island. Visitors cancelling their trip to Hawaii (Big Island) are over reacting my Island is big and the eruption is far away, Hilo & Kona are safe to visit.