Hawaii Volcano Spews Lava As Homes Destroyed And Residents Flee

Scientists say Kilauea volcano is likely to release more lava through additional vents, but they were unable to predict exactly where.

What you need to know
  • Lava shooting out of openings in the ground created by Hawaii's Kilauea volcano
  • More than 1,700 people who evacuated prepared for the possibility they may not return for quite some time
  • Earlier, the older fissures, each several hundred yards long, had quieted down and were only releasing steam and gas

(CBS News) -- The number of homes destroyed by lava shooting out of openings in the ground created by Hawaii's Kilauea volcano has climbed to 21, authorities say.

Some of the more than 1,700 people who evacuated prepared for the possibility they may not return for quite some time, told CBS affiliate KGMB-TV.

Hawaii County civil defense officials said two new fissures opened overnight, bringing the total to nine that opened in the neighborhood since Thursday.

U.S. Geological Survey volcanologist Wendy Stovall said that with the two new fissures, the total was 10, though one of the new ones had already stopped producing lava.

Scientists said Kilauea was likely to release more lava through additional vents, but they were unable to predict exactly where.

Lava erupts from a new fissure after the eruption of Hawaii's Kilauea volcano on May 5, 2018 (via Getty Images)

Leilani Estates, a subdivision in the mostly rural district of Puna, is at greatest risk. Authorities ordered more than 1,700 residents to evacuate from there and nearby Lanipuna Gardens.

CBS affiliate KGMB-TV reports that two new vents opened in the neighborhood on Saturday, bringing the total to 10. Video footage showed lava shooting into the air.

Earlier, the older fissures, each several hundred yards long, had quieted down and were only releasing steam and gas.

Scientists said Kilauea was likely to release more lava through additional vents, but they were unable to predict exactly where.

A man watches as lava is seen spewing from a fissure near the town of Pahoa on Hawaii's Big Island (Getty Images)

Talmadge Magno, the administrator for Hawaii County Civil Defense, told CBS News correspondent Carter Evans that it's not known for how long the volcanic activity will continue."

Leilani Estates, a subdivision in the mostly rural district of Puna, is at greatest risk. Authorities ordered more than 1,700 residents to evacuate from there and nearby Lanipuna Gardens.