Published: Thu, June 07, 2018
Global News | By Stacy Ballard

Lava from Hawaii volcano destroys hundreds more homes

Lava from Hawaii volcano destroys hundreds more homes

Four weeks have passed since the first eruption rocked Hawaii's Big Island and lava continues oozing from volcanic fissures, burning homes to the ground and turning into rivers of molten rock.

On Tuesday, a civil defense official told Reuters that at least 60 to 80 more homes were believed to have been devoured as the lava flow, measuring about a half-mile (80-meter) wide and 10 to 15 feet (3 to 4.6 meter) tall, inundated the adjacent subdivisions of Kapoho Beach Lots and Vacationland. These were vacation homes and rentals, as well as primary residences. Kapoho Bay, famous for its tide pools, was completely filled by lava Tuesday. No injuries were reported in the area because it was evacuated.

Lava claimed Harry Pomerleau's home in Vacationland. Lava destroyed hundreds of homes in mostly rural Hawaii area overnight, a county spokeswoman said.

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Almost a dozen people were left stranded in an area cut off by lava on Sunday.

"For us it's more of a vacation area, but for those who live there permanently, they're trying to figure out where they're going to be living", he said.

Steam billowed up from Hawaii's largest freshwater lake as lava flow evaporated its placid waters within a few hours and made it the latest casualty of the Big Island's Kilauea volcano. (Reuters/Terray Sylvester) A home on fire in the Kapoho area.

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They didn't expect the lava flow to head their way.

Pomerleau said all of the vacation homes he did handyman work for are gone. The flight crew went to a safe location and dropped off the USGS team, then went back and airlifted the people to safety, Janet Babb said, a USGS geologist.

Homes in Kapoho Beach Lots and Vacationland are on smaller lots and are closer together than in other parts of the Puna district.

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Officials warned on Tuesday that a large plume of laze, a toxic lava haze composed of hydrochloric acid and tiny shards of volcanic glass, was blowing inland along the coastline, released with the ongoing inundation of Kapoho Bay. Okabe estimated there are several hundred homes in each of the two subdivisions. (Reuters/Terray Sylvester) Lava flows across a highway on the outskirts of Pahoa. She said it would be some time before precise losses were confirmed.

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