Mauna Loa eruption continues, now threatens main Hawaii Island freeway

Lava erupting from Fissure 3 on Mauna Loa
Fissure 3 producing a lava fountain on November 30, 2022. Photograph by USGS

The present Mauna Loa eruption continues to dominate Hawaii information and wow onlookers with its dramatic lava shows. For an instance, try the sights and sounds of the next video captured by the Hawaii Division of Land and Pure Assets.

Mauna Loa Eruption-Leading Edge, 11-29-22 from Hawaii DLNR on Vimeo.

Any such lava is an a’a flow, which is fast-paced. An a’a move creates jagged-lava rocks.

Although lava has been shifting shortly, partially because of the slope and gravity, it’s starting to gradual because it reaches flatter floor. As this occurs, specialists anticipate the lava move will unfold out and inflate.

Lava has traveled down a number of thousand ft from Mauna Loa summit and is at present headed in a course that places a significant freeway in peril. In our previous update, the move was greater than 10 miles away from any main street. Now, it’s lower than 3.5 miles away from Daniel Ok. Inouye Freeway! Consultants estimate that lava might probably  block the street in as little as two days. In fact, nobody is aware of for certain what the volcano will do.

Color map of eruption

This street that’s in peril of being blocked by lava is Daniel Ok. Inouye Freeway. That’s the  official title of Freeway 200, however most people generally consult with it as Saddle Highway. You may also hear it known as DKI Freeway. It’s probably the most direct connection from Hilo to Kona. Consultants estimate that almost 6,000 automobiles use this street each day, principally by native residents. (See this KHON2 segment for hypothesis on how a Saddle Highway closure might have an effect on the island’s visitors.)

Although the lava move would possibly find yourself crossing Saddle Highway, fortunately, the eruption isn’t at present shifting within the course of any inhabited areas. Additionally, from a traveler’s perspective, it’s value noting that lava is not shifting in direction of any resort areas.

In case you are visiting the island and want to observe the lava move, try this KHON2 section on safely and legally viewing this spectacular and uncommon occasion.


Here’s a checklist of useful and fascinating sources for extra data:

Mauna Loa eruption updates from the USGS

Mauna Loa webcams

USGS image gallery

USGS Volcanoes twitter feed

Hawaii County Civil Defense page for volcano hazards

What you need to know about vog (volcanic gases) in Hawaii

Information regarding travel to Hawaii

Related Articles

Back to top button