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Lava no longer flowing into the ocean from Kilauea

By Star-Advertiser staff

LAST UPDATED: 10:46 a.m. HST, Jan 10, 2012

Lava has stopped flowing into the ocean from Hawaii Volcanoes National Park.

Web cameras and overflights of the coastal plain near the now-inactive West Kailiili ocean entry show cooling lava flows, according to scientists at the Hawaiian Volcano Observatory.

Lava is still visible in Puu Oo crater, but not from the fissure on the east flank of Puu Oo cone. A small pit on the eastern edge of the crater overflowed Monday afternoon and early this morning, generating short lava flows that remained within the crater.

At the summit, the lava lake in a pit in Halemaumau crater rose to a level about 250 feet below the crater flow.

This latest episode in Kilauea's long-running eruption began in early August. A fissure eruption on Sept. 21 fed a lava flow that advanced through the Royal Gardens subdivision and reached the ocean in December.

Janet Babb, a spokeswoman for the observatory, noted that lava activity has ebbed and flowed as the volcano goes through what's known as deflation and inflation cycles.

The volcano is currently in a phase of lesser activity.

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