East Hawaii News

HVNP Pauses Backcountry Permits, Closes Campground

May 11, 2015, 1:45 PM HST
* Updated May 11, 1:46 PM
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Hawai’i Volcanoes National Park announced Monday that out of precaution, a temporary pause in backcountry permits for areas below Crater Rim Drive is in effect. Park officials also say the Kulanaokuaiki Campground is closed.

Jessica Ferracane, Public Affairs Specialist at HVNP, told Big island Now that the closures are temporary and that park officials are going to be watching the seismicity of Kilauea over the next few days to see what happens.

HVNP officials say that the increase in seismicity and the drop in Kilauea’s summit lava lake is similar to what occurred during the Kamoamoa fissure eruption in 2011. During the 2011 erruption, park officials were unable to tell where lava would emerge.

Closures are being conducted solely out of precaution. HVNP officials say there is no immediate indication that the same event that occurred in 2011 is presently happening.

Hawaiian Volcano Observatory noted Monday morning that the lava lake had dropped to about 10 yards below the rim of the Overlook crater. A continuous drop has been observed since Friday.

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