The Lava Is Headed to the Ocean

The Hawaii Files Volcano Watch

May 19, 2018 Pele’s March to the Pacific from Mick Kalber on Vimeo.

There is no doubt in my mind that the lava from this phase of the eruption will make it to the ocean by tonight or sometime in the next two days if the current level of activity continues. Seems like many of the fissures have joined and a new cinder cone may be in the making.

I am not a geologist, but only speculating in what could come next. Check all of the YouTube videos that I have compiled. You will see people’s reactions to the lava, news bulletins, more aerial shots, and commentary from the brave videographer residents who have chosen to stay in lower Puna and document all of the activity for the world to see.

Hawaii Volcano Videos on The Hawaii Files Channel (YouTube)

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BOOM! Halemaumau Explodes

THROWBACK THURSDAY • 1924 • 2018 Explosions
Posted May 10, 2018.

Kilauea Explodes 5-9-18
Ash column rises from the Overlook crater at the summit of Kīlauea Volcano. HVO’s interpretation is that the explosion was triggered by a rockfall from the steep walls of Overlook crater. The photograph was taken at 8:29 a.m. HST on May 9, 2018 from the Jaggar Museum overlook. The explosion was short-lived. Geologists examining the ash deposits on the rim of Halema‘uma‘u crater found fresh lava fragments hurled from the lava lake. This explosion was not caused by the interaction of the lava lake with the water table. When the ash cleared from the crater about an hour after the explosion, geologists were able to observe the lava lake surface, which is still above the water table.

Halemaumau crater exploded early yesterday morning (May 9) after rocks fell into the ever deepening lava lake. The explosion produced a huge cloud that floated thousands of feet into the air. Hawaii Volcano Observatory (HVO) scientists are alerting the public to expect a larger explosion at the Kilauea summit, similar to one that happened in 1924. The Hawaii Volcanoes National Park will close indefinitely starting tomorrow (Friday), May 11 to protect the public from large falling rocks should a bigger explosion happen.

From the HVO bulletin of May 9, 2018:

Volcanic Activity Summary: The steady lowering of the lava lake in “Overlook crater” within Halemaʻumaʻu at the summit of Kīlauea Volcano has raised the potential for explosive eruptions in the coming weeks. If the lava column drops to the level of groundwater beneath Kīlauea Caldera, influx of water into the conduit could cause steam-driven explosions. Debris expelled during such explosions could impact the area surrounding Halemaʻumaʻu and the Kīlauea summit. At this time, we cannot say with certainty that explosive activity will occur, how large the explosions could be, or how long such explosive activity could continue.

Residents of the Kīlauea summit area should learn about the hazards of ashfall, stay informed of the status of the volcano and area closures, and review family and business emergency plans.

Resource on volcanic ash hazards: https://volcanoes.usgs.gov/volcanic_ash/

Read the full summary: HVO-USGS5-9-2018

UPDATE: USGS East Rift Zone Community Meeting –  Want to know more about the possibility of a Kilauea volcano explosion and ash fallout? Watch this informative video of last night’s (May 9) public  meeting.

UPDATE: Disaster Brewing at the Kilauea Summit? – Honolulu Star Advertiser article. 5-10-2018

Meanwhile the East Rift Zone eruption continues at various fronts near the Leilani Estates subdivision and the Puna Geothermal Ventures power plant. As of this posting, 15 fissures have opened in the Leilani Estates area spewing more lava that has destroyed at least 36 structures, 27 of them homes. Many residents had to be evacuated with some already losing their homes, while others wait in anxiety wondering if their homes will be spared.

VIDEO: Ikaika Marzo SO2 killing trees | Opihikau – downslope from Leilani Estates eruption.

Visit our Hawaii Volcano Videos and links page for the latest updates.

May 9, 2018: At 13:00 p.m. HST. Aerial view from the Hawaii County Fire Department of fissure 15. The fissure cut across Pohoiki Road.

The following photos are from the May 9, 1924 Kilauea explosion.

09:13 Explosion cloud. May 24, 1924. [photo caption] Tai Sing Loo 1065. Explosion cloud, Kilauea Volcano, Hawaii National Park. 9:13 a.m. May 24, 1924. [While this photo label indicates the time as 09:13 that is the time that this explosive sequence begins. Based on other photos taken the same day and the Record Book notations it appears more likely that the actual time of the photo was towards the end of the explosions, somewhere around 09:20.This Tai Sing Loo image, featured in the Honolulu Star Bulletin of May 26, 1924. Caption: “The crowd of visitors off the Haleakala and Matsonia Saturday morning witnessing an eruption from in front of the Volcano House. They were warned subsequently by Roy H. Finch, in charge of the observatory, that it was unwise to remain there.” ]
More information and photos below the fold.

Continue readingBOOM! Halemaumau Explodes”

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Throwback Thursday:
Queen Elizabeth 2

The ocean liner QE 2

A little more than ten years ago, the Cunard Liner Queen Elizabeth 2 (QE2) made her final stop in Honolulu on March 25, 2008 on her last around the world voyage before being decommissioned later that year.

The arrival and docking of the QE2 at Honolulu Harbor was always a sight to behold. The ship attracted a good collection of fans and photographers who came out to snap pictures of her. Over the years I’ve shot several photos of QE2 at her familiar moorings at Piers 2 or 11.

In late 2008 she was sold and set sail for her new home in the far away Arab city of Dubai. There she sat for many years, her fate usually unknown until it was announced that she will opened as a floating hotel this year. In an email that I got from the QE2 Story website and message board:

QE2 Dubai Hotel Opens

Hello global QE2 fans! We don’t often send special emails during the month, but we felt this was too important to miss.

QE2 Dubai is now available to book to stay on, and the “soft opening” date is the 18th of April (the same day that Queen Mary 2 is in port), followed by the full “grand opening” in October, when all areas of the ship will be brought back into use.

The ship is now known as the QE2 Hotel  Dubai. More information can be found on the hotel’s website.  An updated story on QE2’s conversion to a hotel appears here: QE2 News / QE2 in Dubai / QE2 Today.

While I never stepped on board the famed ocean liner, she will forever be a treasured memory for all those who traveled on her as well as those who saw her in port and other places while in active service.

Previously on this blog: QE2 Stops in Hawaii  for the Last Time

Hawaii Files Photos on Flickr: QE2

Queen Elizabeth 2QE2 docked at Honolulu’s Pier 11, 1989.

Honolulu Harbor 1989QE2 at Honolulu Harbor, Pier 2, 1989.

Turning the QE2QE2 departing Honolulu Harbor, 1989

QE2 Honolulu Harbor 1999

This is my most popular photo of QE2  taken 1999.

QE2 in Honolulu
Her last stop on March 25, 2008, Honolulu Harbor Pier 2.

All photos and content Copyright to Melvin Ah Ching Productions. 2018. #TBT

 

 

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Throwback Thursday: Aloha Airlines

Aloha Airlines Wall Map
Aloha Airlines Boeing 737-200 "Funbird"
Aloha Airlines Boeing 737-200 on approach to PHNL over Kaka’ako Waterfront Park, February 2008. Retro “Funbird” livery.

March 31 of this year marked the tenth year since the closure of Aloha Airlines after more than 60 years of business in Hawaii. It was a sad and painful time for its owners and employees, and a blow to Hawaii’s traveling public to see a long time kama’aina business go belly-up.

Surely Aloha Airlines demise was attributed to several factors including a bad economy, high fuel prices, outdated equipment and predatory pricing by Mesa’s GO! Airlines subsidiary which itself also closed down some years later.

Former employees of Aloha Airlines marked the date by having a reunion at the Hyatt Regency in Waikiki this past week.

My memories of Aloha Airlines go back to my youth when my parents used to take my sister and I to Hilo Airport just to see the airplanes come and go at the terminal. This was in the old days, long before security became a major issue and obstacle to access by non-passengers.

I used to marvel at both Aloha AirlinesFairchild F27 aircraft as well as those from Hawaiian Airlines (Convairs, DC-6s). This was back in the day before jets happened.

In the old days Aloha Airlines flew a variety of aircraft including the DC-3‘s that they started up with (long before I was born), the Fairchild / Fokker F27, Vickers Viscount and BAC-111 jet. In time they would standardize on the Boeing 737.

As a boy growing up on the Big Island, I rarely got a chance to fly. When we did, my parents always flew us on Hawaiian Airlines.

Aloha Airlines Boeing 737-200
Aloha Airlines at Lihue Airport, May 2005.

It was not until my college years that I finally got around to flying on Aloha. I usually flew to the Big Island of Hawaii’s airports in Kona and Hilo, as well as to Honolulu and once to Lihue, Kauai. Aloha Airlines also flew to Waimea-Kohala. I flew on Aloha’s Boeing 737-200 aircraft except maybe for one or two times on the newer 737-400 that Aloha had in passenger service for a short time.

One of my most memorable Aloha Airlines flight was one coming into Honolulu from the Big Island. While coming into Honolulu our flight had to abort its first landing attempt after another plane was spotted on the runway.

Aloha Airlines 737 at Kona
Aloha Airlines Boeing 737-400 at Kona International Airport, 1989

Flights on Aloha were pleasant experiences. They were on time, the personnel were courteous and helpful and the Boeing 737-200 aircraft were clean, even though by the start of the new century, they were considered “aging” and nearly obsolete.

Aloha was one of the last airlines in the Hawaii market that offered paper flight coupon packs (around 2004) in packets of six. These were very popular in the 1980s after being initially offered by upstart (and long gone) Mid-Pacific Airlines, a discount carrier. Soon after both Aloha and Hawaiian were forced to offer them. Flight certificate booklets were very popular with the public as they allowed people to take an inter-island flight on almost any day and time. They were convenient.

In the long run, the airlines hated the coupons since people stocked up on them and rarely ever flew at the published and more expensive per trip flights. The advent of online booking changed everything in favor of the airlines. Coupons were quickly discontinued.

The last time I flew on Aloha Airlines was back in November of 2006 during the height of the fare war instigated by Mesa/GO! Flights were being sold for as little as $2 each way. It was a definite money loser for the local airlines. The public loved them. I remember buying 4 different flights for a week of travel on three different airlines, flying at about $9 per trip. Once on GO!, once on Hawaiian and I think twice on Aloha.

Aloha Airlines 737-200 in flight on landing
Aloha Airlines Boeing 737-200 on approach to PHNL. Feb. 2008.

That was the last time. A trip to Hilo and back.

Less than two years later, Aloha declared bankruptcy after GO!’s predatory pricing, high fuel costs, aging aircraft and a downturn in the economy forced the airline to go out of business.

Today the carcass of Aloha Airlines lives on in Aloha Air Cargo, which was the firm’s cargo business that was bought out by another company after Aloha Airlines closed in 2008.

Aloha Airlines is now a memory that many people hold with fondness.

Aloha Airlines 737 jet freighter
Aloha Airlines Boeing 737 ETOPS jet freighter on display at John Rogers / Kalaeloa Airport, Sept. 2003. 100 Years of flight air show.
Aloha Air Cargo Boeing 737-300 jet freighter taxing to commuter terminal area, 2015.

Additional Links

cover photo: Aloha Airlines old route map used to be a mural that hung in the inter-island terminal at Honolulu International Airport.

#TBT

 

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