Hazard Notification System (HANS) for Volcanoes


U.S. Geological Survey
Monday, January 24, 2022, 8:45 AM HST (Monday, January 24, 2022, 18:45 UTC)

19°25'16" N 155°17'13" W, Summit Elevation 4091 ft (1247 m)
Current Volcano Alert Level: WATCH
Current Aviation Color Code: ORANGE

Activity Summary: The summit eruption of Kīlauea Volcano, within Halemaʻumaʻu crater, is greatly diminished. Activity has been confined to a small pond north of the west vent cone. Since yesterday afternoon, lava input into the small pond has been intermittent, with several hours between short-lived periods of new lava input. All recent lava activity has been confined to the crater, and there are no indications of activity migrating elsewhere on Kīlauea.

Summit Observations: Summit tiltmeters recorded inflation starting around midnight of January 22 to 23, 2022, which continued until this morning around 3 a.m. HST. Since then, summit tiltmeters have recorded deflation. Volcanic tremor associated with the eruption—as recorded by nearby seismometers—is steady and low, although still above pre-eruption background values. The most recent sulfur dioxide (SO2) emission rate of approximately 2100 tonnes per day was measured January 19, 2022, when lava activity was considerably more rigorous, while an SO2 emission rate of approximately 300 tonnes per day (t/d) was measured on January 11 during an eruption pause.

Halemaʻumaʻu Lava Lake Observations: Over the past 24 hours, lava lake activity has has been confined to a small pond north of the west vent cone. Yesterday morning and early afternoon this small pond was active with constant new lava input and hot lava at the surface. Since about 3 p.m. HST yesterday, lava input into the small pond has become intermittent, exhibiting stop-and-go activity with several hours between short-lived periods of new lava input. Since yesterday morning, there have been several oozeouts along the northwest and south margins of the crater. The lava lake is about 73 meters (240 feet) feet deep relative to when lava emerged on September 29, 2021. Measurements on January 14, 2022 indicated that the total lava volume effused since the beginning of the eruption was approximately 45 million cubic meters (12.0 billion gallons) at that time.

East Rift Zone Observations: No unusual activity has been noted in the Kīlauea East Rift Zone. Low rates of ground deformation and seismicity continue along the East Rift Zone, and along the Southwest Rift Zone. SO2 and hydrogen sulfide (H2S) emissions from Puʻuʻōʻō, in the middle East Rift Zone, were below instrumental detection levels when last measured on January 7, 2021.

Hazard Analysis: This eruption at Kīlauea's summit is occurring within a closed area of Hawaiʻi Volcanoes National Park. Therefore, high levels of volcanic gas are the primary hazard of concern, as this hazard can have far-reaching effects downwind. Large amounts of volcanic gas—primarily water vapor (H2O), carbon dioxide (CO2), and sulfur dioxide (SO2)—are continuously released during eruptions of Kīlauea volcano. As SO2 is released from the summit, it reacts in the atmosphere to create the visible haze known as vog (volcanic smog) that has been observed downwind of Kīlauea. Vog creates the potential for airborne health hazards to residents and visitors, damages agricultural crops and other plants, and affects livestock. For more information on gas hazards at the summit of Kīlauea, please see: https://pubs.er.usgs.gov/publication/fs20173017. Vog information can be found at https://vog.ivhhn.org. 

Additional hazards include Pele's hair and other lightweight volcanic glass fragments from lava fountains that will fall downwind and dust the ground within a few hundred meters (yards) of the erupting fissure vent(s). Strong winds may waft lighter particles to greater distances. Residents should minimize exposure to these volcanic particles, which can cause skin and eye irritation. 

Other significant hazards also remain around Kīlauea caldera from Halemaʻumaʻu crater wall instability, ground cracking, and rockfalls that can be enhanced by earthquakes within the area closed to the public. This underscores the extremely hazardous nature of the rim surrounding Halemaʻumaʻu crater, an area that has been closed to the public since early 2008. 

For discussion of Kīlauea hazards, please see: https://www.usgs.gov/observatories/hawaiian-volcano-observatory/hazards.

Please see the Hawaiʻi Volcanoes National Park website for visitor information: https://www.nps.gov/havo/index.htm. Visitors to Hawaiʻi Volcanoes National Park should note that under southerly (non-trade) wind conditions, there is potential for a dusting of powdery to gritty ash composed of volcanic glass and rock fragments. These ashfalls represent a minor hazard, but visitors should be aware that such dustings at areas around the Kīlauea summit are possible. 

The Hawaiian Volcano Observatory (HVO) continues to closely monitor Kīlauea volcano.

HVO will continue to issue daily Kīlauea volcano updates until further notice. Additional messages will be issued as needed.

More Information:
Kīlauea activity summary also available by phone: (808) 967-8862
Kīlauea webcam images: https://www.usgs.gov/volcanoes/kilauea/webcams
Kīlauea photos/video: https://www.usgs.gov/volcanoes/kilauea/photo-and-video-chronology
Kīlauea lava-flow maps: https://www.usgs.gov/volcanoes/kilauea/maps
Kīlauea FAQs: https://www.usgs.gov/volcanoes/kilauea/faqs

Subscribe to these messages: https://volcanoes.usgs.gov/vns2/

Summary of volcanic hazards from eruptions: https://www.usgs.gov/observatories/hawaiian-volcano-observatory/hazards

Recent earthquakes in Hawaiʻi (map and list): https://volcanoes.usgs.gov/observatories/hvo/

Explanation of Volcano Alert Levels and Aviation Color Codes: https://www.usgs.gov/natural-hazards/volcano-hazards/about-alert-levels



The Hawaiian Volcano Observatory is one of five volcano observatories within the U.S. Geological Survey and is responsible for monitoring volcanoes and earthquakes in Hawaiʻi.