An ever-creeping wall of lava from Kilauea Volcano has engulfed two entire seaside housing tracts at the eastern tip of Hawaii's Big Island, government scientists reported on Wednesday, an area where civil defense officials said almost 280 homes once stood. County Managing Director Wil Okabe says his vacation home in Kapoho Beach Lots is also threatened.
The latest two communities affected by the lava flow had been ordered evacuated beforehand and there were no immediate reports of any casualties.
When asked at a news conference Monday about the number of evacuations, he said he didn't have a good estimate because up to 80% of the houses in some areas are vacation rentals.
Lava fountaining at Fissure 8 continued to reach heights of 150-180 feet today, "feeding a stable channel to the east to the ocean entry in the Kapoho Bay area", the USGS Hawaiian Volcano Observatory said today.
Lava inundated the bay near Hawaii Island's eastern tip on Monday night, causing giant plumes of acidic fumes, known as 'laze, ' to billow from the ocean.
"I left a lot of things behind because I didn't want to feel as if I was abandoning my home", Rahmer said.
Civil defense spokeswoman Janet Snyder said later county tax records show the two subdivisions consist of 279 homes combined and that "many of those 279 homes are feared destroyed".
According to Snyder, a number of drone operators have been cited for violating the temporary flight restriction area over lava flows.
About 2,000 residents have been displaced from Leilani since earlier this month as fountains of lava and high concentrations of toxic sulfur dioxide gas continued unabated. "It's a attractive spot", she said Monday.
At the same time, most of the Hawaii Volcanoes National Park, one of the island's biggest tourist attractions, remains closed indefinitely due to hazards from ash and volcanic rock ejected from the summit crater, and accompanying earthquakes that have damaged park facilities.
Some chose to stay in the area, which now has no power, cell reception, landlines or county water, officials said. One home was lost in a separate 2014 lava flow in the commercial hub of Pahoa.
Salvini will be the new Minister of Interior, while Di Maio will be the Minister of Labour and Economic Development. President of the European Council Donald Tusk has congratulated the new prime minister in a tweet.
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David de Leon, spokesman for the disaster agency, said authorities had already evacuated about 300 people from nearby areas. Officials said the dead were so far all concentrated in three towns: El Rodeo, Alotenango and San Miguel los Lotes.
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