The US Geological Survey (USGS) confirmed that Volcano Kilauea has erupted on Big Island in Hawaii on Sunday, December 20.
The eruption was caused by a 4.4-magnitude earthquake centered about 14km south of Fern Forest, near the Hōlei Pali area of Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park at a depth of 6km.
The Hawaiian Volcano Observatory (HVO) has issued a Volcano Warning Level, and the aviation alert level is now Colour Code Red, the highest warnings available, according to The Independent.
‘An eruption has commenced within Kīlauea’s summit caldera. The situation is rapidly evolving and HVO will issue another statement when more information is available,’ the HVO said.
According to Express, volcanic ash rose up to around 9100m or flight level 300, causing authorities to issue an advisory for residents to be aware of smoke and ash inhalation.
‘HVO continues to monitor Kīlauea as the situation is rapidly evolving with this evening’s eruption at the summit of Kīlauea. We will send out further notifications on Kīlauea and other Hawaiian volcanoes as we observe changes,’ HVO acting Scientist-in-Charge David Phillips said.
No fatalities or injuries have been reported at the time of publication.
A 4.3 magnitude earthquake on the Big Island signals the start of an eruption at Kilauea’s Halemaumau crater. Hawaii County Civil Defense alerts residents trade winds will push any ash toward the Southwest. First picture of the eruption is courtesy of EpicLava. pic.twitter.com/zIC1w7UtLR
— KITV4 (@KITV4) December 21, 2020
Woww… just started? Halema’uma’u, Kilauea, Hawaii. Webcam: https://t.co/af8vw0kPyu pic.twitter.com/tbU2C0VaRn
— Szabolcs Harangi (@szharangi) December 21, 2020
Kilauea RIGHT NOW! pic.twitter.com/IZPdx20muD
— (@KilohanaKona) December 21, 2020