Hawaii: Several Injured After Lava Hits Boat

Hawaii: Several Injured After Lava Hits Boat

Hawaii: Several Injured After Lava Hits Boat

The people were aboard a tour boat that takes visitors to see lava from an erupting volcano plunge into the ocean.

A blob of hot volcanic lava struck an ocean tour boat just off the Big Island of Hawaii on Monday, injuring almost two dozen people in the worst casualty incident to date from the ongoing eruption of the Kilauea Volcano.

The Coast Guard, DLNR and Hawaii Police Department are investigating the tour boat incident. "We didn't see it".

The boat, owned by Lava Ocean Tours, was said by some to have been outside a safety zone established by the Hawaiian coastguard, although there's some debate taking place about this. Part of the lava actually landed on the vessel, damaged most parts of the vessel. Screams can be heard as some of it, including the aforementioned bomb, smash down through the roof.

The Coast Guard now prohibits all vessels from getting closer than 984 feet from where Kilauea volcano's lava oozes into the sea.

The people were aboard a tour boat that takes visitors to see lava plunging into the ocean. It has destroyed more than 700 homes in lower Puna since then.

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The Kilauea volcano has been active since the 1980s, but there's been a spike in activity since early May. There are a number of areas where volcanic material is entering the ocean, and when this happens, the cold water can cause an explosion, fragmenting the lava.

In May its eruption entered a new phase when it began spurting lava through newly formed fissures in a residential neighbourhood.

"It was an explosion, basically", said Janet Snyder, a spokeswoman for the county mayor, told the Tribune Herald newspaper.

The site marked the latest challenge facing authorities during what geologists call an unprecedented, simultaneous eruption at Kilauea's summit and from giant fissures 25 miles (40 km) down its eastern side. The interaction of lava with the ocean creates "laze", a corrosive seawater plume laden with hydrochloric acid and fine volcanic particles that drifts downwind and can irritate the skin, eyes and lungs. The volcano has also been pumping out much more lava than in the past; as much as 26 times the amount as the 2016 eruption.

The flow of lava into the sea made a new small island. An aerial view of a massive surface lava flow.

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