The world's largest active volcano erupts in Hawaii
Sylvie Claire / November 29, 2022
The world's largest active volcano, Mauna Loa, located in Hawaii, erupted for the first time in nearly 40 years, spewing ash around Monday morning without threatening homes for now.
The eruption began Sunday night at 11:30 p.m. local time, the U.S. Geophysical Institute (USGS) announced in an alert. "Currently, lava flows are contained at the summit and do not threaten people downstream," it first said.
On Monday morning, in response to a photo posted on Twitter that appeared to show lava, the USGS said it "appears that lava may be escaping from the caldera."
"There is no indication of any progression of the eruption to a rift zone," which allows magma to travel more easily underground, the institute added Monday.
The early stages of a Mauna Loa eruption can evolve quickly and the location and progress of lava flows can change rapidly," the institute warned in its first note Sunday.
The winds could carry "volcanic gas and Pele hair," volcanic glass fibers, the USGS said. The U.S. Weather Service (NWS) warned that volcanic ash could accumulate around the volcano.
Mauna Loa, which rises to 4,169 meters, is located on the island of Hawaii, the largest in the Pacific archipelago. The volcano has erupted 33 times since 1843. Its last eruption dates back to 1984, and lasted 22 days.