Earthquakes on Hawaii volcano could signal new eruption

Earthquakes on Hawaii volcano could signal new eruption
Photo courtesy: Hawaiian Volcano Observatory

Associated Press

HONOLULU (AP) - A series of earthquakes and shifting ground on the slopes of Kilauea have scientists wondering what will happen next at one of the world's most active volcanos.

A lake of lava near the summit of Kilauea on Hawaii's Big Island had risen to a record-high level after a recent explosion.

But in the past few days, the pool of molten rock began sinking, and the surface of the lava lake fell nearly 500 feet. Meanwhile, a rash of earthquakes rattled the volcano with as many as 20 to 25 quakes per hour.

Volcano scientist Steve Brantley says the lava has been dropping out of sight, and it has to be going somewhere. He says one possibility is that a new lava eruption could break through the surface of the mountain.

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