Firefighters also had to lead a man from his home near Kilauea late on Sunday after he was trapped by fast-moving lava, Hawaii News Now reported. Authorities confirmed Monday that two wells had been covered by lava, but stressed that no uncontrolled release of hydrogen sulfide was detected.
Since this eruption episode began on May 3, Hawaii County has ordered about 2,000 people to evacuate from Leilani Estates and surrounding neighborhoods.
David Mace of the Federal Emergency Management Agency said the lava is on the 40 acres of the 815-acre property that house the geothermal wells and the deactivated powerplant.
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Information still is preliminary, however, and authorities say they are still checking flooded buildings and streets. Officials are urging anyone in the area to seek higher ground and not to drive through flooded roads.
It gave no details as to how deep into the Puna Geothermal Venture lava has intruded.
Though lava destruction from the volcano is confined to a roughly 10-square-mile (26-sq-km) area, the eruption is hurting the island's tourist-driven economy as potential visitors fear ashfall or volcanic smog belching from Kilauea's summit.
The agency said the evacuations were due to activity from fissure 7, one of 24 cracks in the ground that have opened in the island's East Rift Zone since the start of the month. Officials say the flow is advancing on Nohea and Kupono streets north of Leilani Street.
"Several residents were evacuated in advance of the risky and fast-moving flows", the HVO said. "Primary concern is sulfur dioxide from the eruption and lava coming on site".
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One man had part of his left leg shattered after a piece of cooling lava hit him out of nowhere while he was on his balcony . Others, however, contend that public officials have not enforced existing regulations as strictly as they could have.
According to CNN, the oozing lava has destroyed a total of 82 structures on Hawaii's big island since the volcano first erupted on May third.
Lava-filled fissures have torn apart chunks of the southeastern side of the Big Island over the past three weeks as Kilaeau has become more active.
That's nearly 4 square miles.
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