|Lava Flow by Mats Fogelvik, of Ocean View, is a koa table and one of the many wood art pieces at|
Volcano Art Center's first biennial Volcano Wood Show. Photo from Mats Fogelvik
|Nick Shema with his intricate piece entitled |
Tonsu, created with three types of wood.
Photo by Annie Bosted
Tiger Shark Nutcracker and Ukulele Beer Flight
Server by Jim Harold. Photo by Annie Bosted
Michael Mortara stands behind a piece he created entitled Keawe Hall Table” which he created by embedding one eye-catching slab of keawe wood in a bed of epoxy. Photo by Annie Bosted
Inflation and earthquake activity ramped up prior to Mauna Loa’s 1984 eruption, so much so that in June of 1983, the USGS Hawaiian Volcano Observatory (HVO) indicated that an eruption could occur during the following year, though the exact timing was unknown.
Increased earthquakes and tremor, a type of seismic signal associated with magma movement, began mere hours before glow was observed at the summit of Mauna Loa at 1:25 a.m., HST, on March 25, 1984. A few hours later, the eruption migrated to vents lower on the Northeast Rift Zone of the volcano. Vent locations and lava flow directions weren’t known until HVO was able to conduct an overflight at dawn.
For the next three weeks, multiple lava flows slowly advanced in a northeast direction towards Hilo town. Much of the state was impacted by vog—volcanic air pollution.
Though lava flows did not cross it, the Saddle Road (Highway 200) remained closed during the 1984 eruption. Eruption spectators caused traffic congestion in Hilo, and some risked their safety to trespass into the closed area.
Some power poles and lines were destroyed by a lava flow, impacting electrical service to a relay station and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Mauna Loa Observatory.
HVO worked closely with Hawai'i County Civil Defense Agency, which planned to use a tiered system to convey to Hilo residents whether they would need to evacuate—Condition One: Be on alert status and prepared to evacuate within 36 hours. Condition Two: Flow anticipated within 24 hours, begin evacuating. Condition Three: Complete evacuation and secure the area.
Daily press briefings were held by HVO and Civil Defense to share information on Mauna Loa’s eruption dynamics, flow locations, advance rates, and hazards. Local newspapers updated the public and provided maps showing approximate lava flow locations. In 1984, Mauna Loa lava flows stopped just 4.0 mi (6.4 km) from Hilo at the time.
|Mauna Loa's 1984 eruption. Photo from National Park Service|
During Kīlauea’s decades-long Pu‘u‘ō‘ō eruption, HVO developed a method to create detailed lava-flow maps within hours of data collection. Hundreds of thermal and visual images collected during an overflight are stitched together to create a map showing lava flow extents and where lava flows are most active; the thermal maps can also reveal lava tube development.
Modern digital elevation models of the ground surface can be used to forecast future lava-flow paths downslope, a technique refined during the 2018 lower East Rift Zone eruption of Kīlauea.
HVO now shares data and information in near real-time on HVO’s public website. This includes webcams, maps, and multimedia, as well as HVO’s other monitoring datasets that inform us of earthquake activity, ground deformation, and volcanic gas emissions.
The public can also subscribe to the USGS Volcano Notification Service for email notifications about volcanic activity in Hawaiʻi. The Hawai‘i Interagency Vog Information Dashboard is another valuable resource, providing information on gas hazards that can impact much of the state during an eruption.
Reviewing the events of previous Mauna Loa eruptions can help Island of Hawai‘i residents and visitors to understand how a future eruption might progress and its potential impacts. Though the location and time of Mauna Loa’s next eruption are not known, it’s never too early to prepare for a future eruption and familiarize yourself with available resources. In the meantime, HVO will remain vigilant in monitoring Mauna Loa.
In the past weeks, Hawai'i Island has seen an increase of positive cases, many of which are associated
"As you continue to enjoy the summer, within the policies of face coverings, distancing, and gathering, stay healthy by exercise, fresh air, and sunlight.
"To help stem the increase in cases, Community Testing is scheduled starting Tuesday at Kona Aquatics in Kailua-Kona from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m. and Wednesday at Afook Chinen Civic Auditorium in Hilo from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m.. The purpose of testing is to identify positive cases as early as possible, and in this way, help prevent the spread of the coronavirus. For those who have not been vaccinated, know that by getting vaccinated, you are helping to prevent the spread of this virus."
For more information on clinics and pharmacies offering vaccination, visit the County of Hawai'i website. Civil Defense: www.hawaiicounty.gov
GOLF & MEMBERSHIPS for Discovery Harbour Golf Course and its Clubhouse: The Club offers Social Memberships, with future use of the clubhouse and current use of the pickleball courts as well as walking and running on specified areas of the golf course before 8 a.m. and after 3 p.m. to enjoy the panoramic