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Current Affairs

Mt Kilauea tremors

Date: 28 August 2021 Tags: Geography & Environment

Issue

The area near the Mt Kilauea in Hawaii has been witnessing tremors since the last couple of months.

 

Background

Scientists have been warning of outpouring of lava in future as the volcano is becoming more active day by day.

 

Details

  • The incident is not the first time that volcano has behaved differently. Earlier too same incidents were reported without any volcanic eruption.

  • The earthquake tremors were majorly observed at the southern part of the crater at Kilauea’s summit. Scientists say that reason may be magma shifting about a half-mile to a mile below the surface.

 

The take-away

  • It is not unique for Mt Kilauea to witness tremors due to shifting of rocks. The ground may even swell due to sun and rains causing expansion and contraction.

  • The combination of earthquakes and swelling may not be that simple reason to ignore. It may indeed signal imminent volcanic eruptions.

  • Earthquakes between the magnitude of 1 and 3 have been taking place in swarms. There have been as much as 25 small earthquakes in an hour.

 

Area of occurrence

  • The Kilauea volcano is located on the Big Island within the Volcanoes National Park of Hawaii, which is away from human habitation.

  • The Kilauea is part of five volcanoes located on the same island. It is the youngest and most active one.

 

Earlier incidents

  • Similar incident was observed in 2015 when the volcanic area swelled and activity was observed near the summit. However, no earthquakes were recorded.

  • Numerous eruption of Kilauea has taken place. The volcano is famous for its caldera, which is big enough to fill 10 Hoover dams with lava.

 

Current situation

  • The threat level has been marked at the highest level signaling that the volcano has high potential of erupting.

  • The aviation code near the volcano has been changed to orange that indicates that pilots can avoid the area for potential volcanic eruption.