Volcano Erupts in Hawaii For First Time Since 1984

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Two Hawaiian volcanoes are putting on a dual show, with Mauna Loa and Kīlauea erupting for the first time in nearly four decades.

Kilauea has actually been erupting for the past year, with Mauna Loa joining the fun Sunday. Both are located in Hawaii Volcanoes National Park and were spewing lava on the Big Island on Tuesday.

The historic event is expected to draw even more visitors to Hawaii than usual.

Hawaii Volcanoes National Park

“While an eruption is an exciting experience, keep in mind you are observing a sacred event,” the National Park Service said in a statement. “Kīlauea and Mauna Loa volcano are wahi kapu (sacred landscapes) surrounded with storied places. Your visit can be more meaningful by learning about the deep connections between Native Hawaiian culture and this landscape.”

While the news is sure to attract attention, mostly positive, volcanic eruptions can impact air quality and flights to the state with something known as “vlog,” or volcanic smog.

“Passengers with flights to Hilo International Airport (ITO) or the Ellison Onizuka Kona International Airport at Keahole (KOA) should check with their airline prior to heading to the airport due to the volcanic activity at Mauna Loa,” according to an advisory from the state Transportation Department.

While neither volcano is threatening nearby homes or people, Hawaii Gov. David Ige to sign an emergency proclamation on Tuesday, allowing the state’s director of emergency services to issue warnings and alerts should it be deemed necessary.

Mauna Loa and Kīlauea are just 21 miles apart and have not erupted at the same time since 1984, when Mauna Loa erupted last. On Monday, it reportedly shot lava into the air that reached about 200 feet.

“The state has a plan to close a portion of Daniel K. Inouye Highway on Hawaii Island if lava from the Mauna Loa eruption approaches, officials announced Tuesday,” Hawaii News Now wrote. “Lava flows are headed toward the thoroughfare, but it’s too soon to say if they’ll cross it.”

Read More: Rock Cracks Near Yellowstone Volcano Cause Urgent Park Closure

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