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Lava breakout diverting molten-rock from path to flow’s front

  • HAWAII VOLCANO OBSERVATORY
    The leading tip of the June 27th flow has not advanced significantly over the past week, and remains roughly 550 yards upslope of Highway 130, west of the fire and police station. Breakouts persist upslope, however, and these areas of activity can be spotted in this photograph by small smoke plumes where the lava is burning vegetation on the flow margins.
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PAHOA >> A molten-rock breakout near Kilauea Volcano’s Puu Oo crater appears to be diverting lava from the path to the June 27 flow’s front, which has stalled for longer than a week. 

Situated about 0.36 miles from Highway 130 near Pahoa’s police and fire stations, the front hasn’t advanced since late January. In addition to numerous breakouts flowing behind the front, volcano scientists are saying a large breakout near the crater appears to be rerouting lava from previously advancing flows. 

“Clearly, this breakout is helping to limit the amount of lava that can make its way down to the lava tube near the flow front above Pahoa,” said Steve Brantley, acting scientist-in-charge for the Hawaiian Volcano Observatory. 

Located about 2 miles northeast of the Puu Oo crater, the breakout — estimated to be several hundred yards long — is moving across an older lava flow. 

The flow’s front front last advanced 50 yards on Jan. 26.

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