LAVA has breached the vital geothermal power plant responsible for providing the Big Island with a quarter of its electricity, causing fears to skyrocket as a series of natural disasters continue to plague Hawaii.
- Hundreds of earthquakes struck near the summit of Hawaii's Kilauea volcano on Saturday, officials say
- Yesterday's volcanic activity sent ash clouds up to 14,764 feet into the atmosphere
- It has sparked concerns that dangerous levels of sulfur dioxide gas and ash could combine with moisture and dust in the air to cause volcanic smog, or 'vog'
- Volcano-related earthquakes have caused cracks to open up across the Big Island's southeastern region
- Geologists have said after three weeks of escalating activity, Kilauea has entered a 'steady state' of eruption
Hawaii has been struck with 270 earthquakes in just one day as the Kilauea volcano continues to billow toxic ash and spout lava across the island.
More than three weeks after the eruptions first began, Mount Kilauea is showing no signs of stopping.
Photos of the island show a landscape devastated by red hot lava flows and burning trees and shrubbery.
Yesterday's volcanic activity sent ash clouds up to 14,764 feet into the atmosphere, sparking concerns that dangerous levels of sulfur dioxide gas and ash could combine with moisture and dust in the air to cause volcanic smog, or 'vog.'
The vog carries tiny drops of sulfuric acid which cause respiratory problems, even triggering asthma attacks in sufferers, and cause damage to the lungs.
Winds are set to shift early next week, which could push higher concentrations of vog northwest where it could affect more populated areas, Bravender said.
U.S. Marine Corps and National Guard are on standby to evacuate for coastal residents
Meanwhile, lava streams have spread more than 5,400 acres destroying 82 homes in the process.
Hundreds of earthquakes shook the island in just 24 hours on Saturday
Roads have been cut off, an estimated 2,000 residents have been evacuated by road and by air, and as the lava continues to spill, some of it hitting the ocean, the air is becoming more toxic to breathe.
As the area heads into the fourth week of eruptions,another 2,000 people living in coastal communities may be forced to flee as lava flows threaten to cut off their escape routes.