Published: Tue, June 12, 2018
Global | By Marsha Munoz

INTERNATIONAL - Over 600 homes destroyed by Hawaii volcano eruption

INTERNATIONAL - Over 600 homes destroyed by Hawaii volcano eruption

An ever-creeping wall of lava from Kilauea Volcano has engulfed two entire seaside housing tracts at the eastern tip of Hawaii's Big Island, government scientists reported on Wednesday, an area where civil defense officials said almost 280 homes once stood.

Lava destroys homes in the Kapoho area, east of Pahoa, during ongoing eruptions of the Kilauea Volcano in Hawaii, U.S., June 5, 2018.

Most of the two dozen volcanic vents have grown largely quiet over the past week, with just one, Fissure 8, still spewing large volumes of molten rock from the ground as of Wednesday, the USGS said.

Kilauea volcano has been erupting almost continuously for about five weeks.

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"Our responsibility is to try to work with the community to rebuild out of harm's way", Kim said.

More than 600 homes have been destroyed since the volcanic activity began in early may.

"Lava continues to enter the ocean along a broad front in Kapoho Bay and the Vacationland area and it continues to creep north of what remains of Kapoho Beach Lots", USGS geologist Janet Babb told Associated Press.

Kim, who had previously said it would take a minimum of $5 million per mile to fix roads ravaged by Kilauea, said the $12 million will help Hawaii County "focus on the critical tasks of making life better for our people affected by the eruption".

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Hundreds of homes have been destroyed, and thousands of people displaced.

It's still unclear how many homes in those two beach lots have been affected as authorities are looking to assess the damage, Hawaii Civil Defense Administrator Talmadge Magno said Wednesday. "I'm talking about 600 families". Scientists said that while the height of the lava is variable depending on the source and local topography, much of the area is covered in 10 to 20 feet (3 to 6 meters) of lava.

Officials with the U.S. Geological Survey said Wednesday that the entire neighborhood of Vacationland has been covered by lava, and the nearby Kapoho subdivision has only a few structures remaining.

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