ERUPTION!

The Hawaii Files Volcano Watch

6.9 EARTHQUAKE FELT STATEWIDE – May 4, 2018. (updated)

A new eruption started yesterday (May 3) in the Leilani Estates subdivision at around 4:30 in the afternoon. The breakout of lava opened up in the middle of a street and lasted for a few hours. The new eruption stopped for several hours before restarting on another street in the same subdivision early this morning (May 4). As of this posting a third location of lava breakout has occurred.

The situation is ongoing and in constant change. The Hawaii County Civil Defense agency has ordered a mandatory evacuation of the Leilani Estates and Lanipuna Gardens subdivisions. It would be a good idea for all residents living downslope of the active eruption area to be ready to also evacuate.

Some mainland media have erroneously reported that the overall eruption is new. As most everyone in Hawaii knows, this is the latest phase in a long running eruption that started at the Pu’u O’o area in January 1983 and has been ongoing ever since. Over the decades the eruption has destroyed homes, businesses and property. In 2008 the summit of Kilauea erupted and to this very day, both locations have been in continuous eruption spewing millions of yards of lava. The Leilani Estates chapter is just the latest in this ongoing series.

The Hawaii Files will be updating this post through most of today with additional videos added to our compilation (above) as they are posted by various sources to YouTube. New photographs from the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) will also be posted as they become available.

Leilani Estates Lava Fissure
An eruption has commenced in the Leilani Estates subdivision in the lower East Rift Zone of Kīlauea Volcano. White, hot vapor and blue fume emanated from an area of cracking in the eastern part of the subdivision.

Informative Links for Up To Date News

Hawaii Volcano Observatory (USGS)
USGS: Earthquakes
USGS: Kiluaea Volcano Alerts
Hawaii County Civil Defense
Big Island Now
Hawaii Tribune Herald
Ikaika Marzo ( Facebook video blogger)
Honolulu Star Advertiser
Honolulu Civil Beat
The Hawaii Files Channel Video Compilation

UPDATE: 6.9 Earthquake (12:30 pm 5-4-18)

Coordinates:-155.0321, 19.3702
Depth:5 km (3.1 mi)
Magnitude:6.9
Date:2018-05-04 12:32:55 local
2018-05-04 22:32:55 UTC
Age: 0 days
Distance From:16km SW of Leilani Estates, Hawaii
Number of Phases:67
Azimuthal Gap (deg):212
Distance to Nearest Station:0.1 deg
Vertical / Horizontal Error:0.71 km / 0.48 km
Event ID:us1000dyad
Contributing Network:us

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Phantom Missile Alert in Hawaii

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So what’s up with the missile attack warning that was sounded early this morning at the 8 o clock hour? Many Hawaii residents statewide got cell phone text messages that read:

“BALLISTIC MISSILE THREAT INBOUND TO HAWAII. SEEK IMMEDIATE SHELTER. THIS IS NOT DRILL.”

Several of my friends got the message by cell phone text alert. I did not.

The first I heard about this was a text that I got from my friend Daniel which read: “Did you just get an emergency text????” I answered in the negative. No text message for me. He followed up, “I am not joking.” He attached the screen shot from his phone as shown below:

Emergency Text Message
The emergency text that came to many cell phone early this morning (Jan. 13).

A few moments later, my friend Lisa called. She was in a state of panic. It was aggravating to her since she is also down and out with a viral strain of influenza. She also got the emergency text message.

Talking to her on the phone, I told her that it was probably a false alarm, but also to listen to the radio. I began to think it was a false alarm even if I was worried for a few minutes after the initial call.

What prompted me to this was the fact that when I turned the radio to KSSK AM & FM (where they have in the past did outstanding broadcasts of local emergencies) there was nothing to be found except for a re-run of a previous Perry & Price radio program.

Nothing there. This is likely a false alarm.

While talking to Lisa on my landline phone, I called Daniel on the cell phone. He told me his wife Emma had called the 911 emergency number who told her that it was, indeed a false alarm.

Just to make doubly sure, I called 911 after I got off the phone with Daniel. By then everyone else was probably in a panic as the 911 number was busy. Pity the poor soul who had to call if it was an actual emergency. Goes to show that in a massive alert scenario, that calling 911 will likely yield a busy signal unless you get in early.

Soon I took to Facebook where my friends and others were commenting on the situation. In about a half hour it was agreed and known among many that the emergency texts were a false  alarm.

Surely someone at the Hawaii Emergency Management Agency has to take responsibility for this major false alarm. A breaking news article published at the Honolulu Star Advertiser website stated that an “employee pushed the wrong button,” during a shift change.

An investigation is likely pending. Governor David Ige had a few words to say at this press conference today (KHON TV video):

Vern T. Miyagi, Administrator for the Hawaii Emergency Management Agency says they are investigating the incident and procedures. He did not or was not able to answer questions as to who specifically pressed the button at the agency and why not all cell phone users got the emergency text message.

The Governor and  agency have stated that they will not let this type of false alarm happen again.

There likely will be further news, discussion and legislative hearings on this in the coming days and weeks.

Hawaii can rest assured, that despite the dire warning and short term panic, that today’s “missile attack” was not the real thing. Perhaps it is a wake-up call to bring this issue to the forefront and help us be prepared for the next time.

 

 

 

 

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