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Home Local News Hawaiian Volcano Observatory Status Report For Thursday, December 8, 2022, 4:46 PM

Hawaiian Volcano Observatory Status Report For Thursday, December 8, 2022, 4:46 PM

by Thunda

U.S. Geological Survey
Thursday, December 8, 2022, 4:46 PM HST (Friday, December 9, 2022, 02:46 UTC)

MAUNA LOA (VNUM #332020)
19°28’30” N 155°36’29” W, Summit Elevation 13681 ft (4170 m)
Current Volcano Alert Level: WARNING
Current Aviation Color Code: ORANGE

The Northeast Rift Zone eruption of Mauna Loa continues with one active fissure, fissure 3, feeding lava flows downslope.  

Fissure 3 vent continues to erupt but the supply of lava was reduced this morning. Lava was overtopping channels near the vent with flows extending no farther than 2.75 mi (4.4 km) from the vent as of approximately 9:30 a.m. this morning, December 8. The channels below this point appear drained of lava and probably no longer feed the main flow front, which remains stalled about 1.7 mi (2.8 km) from the Daniel K. Inouye Highway (Saddle Road).  The lava flow is now inactive for most of its lower length, but the flow front may appear to advance a little as it settles.   

Sulfur dioxide (SO2) emission rates of approximately 130,000 tonnes per day (t/d) were measured on December 7, 2022, and remain elevated at this time. Volcanic gas is rising high and vertically into the atmosphere before being blown to the west at high altitude, generating vog (volcanic air pollution) in areas downwind. The Hawaii Interagency Vog Information Dashboard has detailed information about vog: Forecasts for the dispersion of vog can be found on the VMAP Vog Forecast Dashboard:

Pele’s hair (strands of volcanic glass) fragments are being wafted great distances and have been reported as far Honoka‘a. 

Tremor (a signal associated with subsurface fluid movement) continues beneath the currently active fissure. This indicates that magma is still being supplied to the fissure, and activity is likely to continue as long as we see this signal.   

There is no active lava within Moku’āweoweo caldera nor the Southwest Rift Zone. We do not expect any eruptive activity outside the Northeast Rift Zone.    

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