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Lava From Hawaii Volcano Flowing Into Ocean

Officials on Hawaii's Big Island say lava from an erupting volcano has crossed a highway and flowed into the ocean.

Posted: May. 20, 2018 10:59 AM

PAHOA, Hawaii (AP) - Officials on Hawaii's Big Island say lava from an erupting volcano has crossed a highway and flowed into the ocean.

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Hawaii County Civil Defense said late Saturday that another lava flow is getting close to the highway in the remote, rural area. The highway has shut down in some spots, and residents in the area have been evacuated.

Lava entering the sea produces hazards that can lead to lung, eye and skin irritation. County officials say the phenomenon sends "hydrochloric acid and steam with fine glass particles into the air."

The Kilauea volcano has sent oozing lava and noxious gas into neighborhoods for more than two weeks, burning homes, driving out residents and producing explosive eruptions at the summit.

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12 a.m.

The saga of a Hawaii volcano's impact on rural communities is heading into its third week.

Dozens of homes have burned, lava has crossed a road and explosions at the summit bring worries about ash fallout.

As lava flows have grown more vigorous, there's concern more homes may burn and more evacuations will be ordered.

Officials want residents in the remote and rural area of the Big Island to heed evacuation warnings. A few people were temporarily trapped when a flow crossed a road. Some had to be airlifted to safety.

The area affected by lava and ash is small compared to the Big Island, which is about 4,000 square miles (10,360 square kilometers). Most of the island and the rest of the state is unaffected by Kilauea's volcanic activity.

(Copyright 2018 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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