Hawaii’s Kilauea volcano erupted Thursday, hurling plumes of smoke and ash over 30,000 feet into the air as residents were told by state officials to “shelter in place,” reports Fox News.
The United States National Weather Service issued an “ashfall warning” until 8:00am Friday morning after the volcano “exploded” at approximately 5:00am local time, saying “an Explosive Eruption at Kilauea’s Summit has occurred.”
“This is a Civil Defense Message for May 17 at 5:00AM. Hawaiian Volcano Observatory reports that an Explosive Eruption at Kilauea’s Summit has occurred. The resulting ash plume will cover the surrounding area,” wrote the Hawaii Defense Agency on social media.
Images of the ash plume and molten lava appeared on social media within minutes as local residents rushed for shelter and awaited further instructions.
People on Hawaii’s Big Island were ordered to shelter in place after an explosive eruption on the Kilauea volcano sent ash spewing 30,000 feet into the air.
More explosive eruptions are expected. pic.twitter.com/MqoVRCj5Kt
— AJ+ (@ajplus) May 17, 2018
— Jeff Paul (@Jeff_Journalist) May 17, 2018
Hawaii residents and tourists have been preparing for a “larger explosion” for two weeks as smaller “fissures” began to appear around the main island; prompting experts to warn a catastrophic event could take place within days.