Unrest beneath Kīlauea continues despite pause in short-lived eruption

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USGS webcam of June 3, 2024, eruption site.

The recent Kīlauea eruption within Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park remains paused after spewing lava for nearly 12 hours 2.5 miles southwest of Kaluapele (Kīlauea caldera).

Kīlauea’s alert level/aviation color code remains at WATCH/ORANGE as the area of the event is in a remote location and no threat to communities or infrastructure.

The eruption began on Monday at 12:30 a.m. and ended around 11 a.m. and noon. While there is no active lava on the surface, Hawaiian Volcano Observatory reports that levels of unrest remain high as the vent remains open, tremor is still present, glow could still be seen from the fissures overnight and active degassing of SO2 is still occurring from the fissures and blowing downwind.


Katie Mulliken, geologist for HVO, said the last time an eruption occurred in this area was in 1974 and lasted six hours. This event is the first time an eruption has occurred outside of the caldera since 2018 when fissures opened up in Puna communities devastating the area, destroying roads and homes.

Courtesy of Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park

At this point, Mulliken said geologists are not seeing an indication that magma is moving into another area, but it could happen. Additionally, there is no activity in the East Rift Zone.

the last active spattering at the vents was observed at the surface at approximately 9 a.m. on Monday, and lava flows were sluggish during the hour before noon. However, a continuous glow was visible in webcam imagery overnight at the site of the fissures and confirmed by an early morning overflight.


Active degassing of SO2 gas is still occurring with a measured rate of approximately 12,000 tonnes per day at noon on Monday. Numerous large ground cracks have formed near the eruption extending westward to within 540 yards of Maunaiki. The cluster of earthquakes present in the area yesterday afternoon ended overnight.

Ground deformation over the past 24 hours showed deflationary trends that have become flat to slightly inflationary at the summit and south caldera.

Some magma pressure has been released beneath Halemaʻumaʻu and the south caldera region as a result of the eruption. While tremor remains, seismicity and deformation have been minor following the onset of the eruption.


Changes in the character and location of unrest can occur quickly, as can the potential for an eruption to restart at the same fissures or in a new area.

A map showing the location of past eruptions in this area, and the approximate location of the new fissures is available here.

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