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New lava flow follows collapse of Pu'u 'O'o crater floor

By Associated Press

LAST UPDATED: 8:42 a.m. HST, Aug 4, 2011


Activity at a new lava flow on the west flank of Pu‘u ‘O‘o crater appears to be decreasing in vigor, scientists at the Hawaiian Volcano Observatory said this morning.

An overflight of the new lava flow was planned for this morning.

At about 2 p.m. Wednesday, lava began flowing from vents located less than one-half mile from the Kamoamoa fissure that erupted in March.

The lava flowed northwest into forests and about 2.2 miles south of the vents by 5 p.m. The flow is entirely contained in the Hawaii Volcanoes National Park and poses no threat to private property, scientists said. The flow continued overnight, but appears to be less active.

Volcanologist Janet Babb said it’s the first time lava has broken out at the volcano since March, aside from some that spilled out at the Pu‘u ‘O‘o crater last week. 

The new lava activity followed a collapse of the crater flow in Pu‘u ‘O‘o. The lava lake that had been building for the last few months disappeared in the collapse.

Kilauea is one of the world’s most active volcanoes. It has been constantly erupting since Jan. 2, 1983.

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