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World’s largest volcano erupts in Hawaii

No homes are under threat from lava flowing from the world’s largest active volcano – Hawaii’s Mauna Loa – which erupted for the first time in nearly 40 years.

November 29, 2022
By AAP
29 November 2022

Hawaii’s Mauna Loa, the world’s largest active volcano, has begun erupting for the first time since 1984, ending its longest quiet period in recorded history.

The night sky above Hawaii’s largest island glowed a hellish red as bright, hot lava sprang forth at the volcano’s summit at around 11.30 pm local time on Sunday.

The lava is contained within the summit and does not threaten Hawaiians living downslope for now, the US Geological Service (USGS) said.

The service warned residents on Monday that volcanic gases and fine ash may drift their way.

Mauna Loa rises 4169 metres above the Pacific Ocean, part of the chain of volcanoes that formed the islands of Hawaii. It last erupted in March and April of 1984, sending a flow of lava within 8.05 kilometres of Hilo, the island’s largest city.

Hawaii’s Emergency Management Agency said it had opened two shelters on the island as a precaution but also emphasised that there are no signs that lava will threaten populated areas and that it had not issued any evacuation orders.

About half of all recorded eruptions of Mauna Loa had been confined to the summit, the agency said.

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