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What to Expect from the Mauna Loa Eruption in November 2022

Mahalo For Sharing Your Aloha

What is the Mauna Loa volcano and why is it expected to erupt in November 2022?

Mauna Loa is a volcano in Hawai’i that erupted in November 2022. This is the first eruption in 38 years. The volcano is classified as a warning level and there have been no evacuations called for so far. The eruption is not threatening downslope communities. The Hawaii government opened shelters in case people choose to evacuate.

Mauna Loa 01
A photo from Khon2.
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What are the potential impacts of an eruption from Mauna Loa?

1. Road and highway closures

The potential impacts of an eruption from Mauna Loa on roads and highways include increased SO2 emission rates, lava flows that may reach highways, hazardous conditions for drivers due to the presence of molten rock, restricted parking and walking along the shoulders of highways in the area, and disruption or closure of roads. The Hawaii Department of Transportation has warned drivers to use caution if driving on Inouye Highway due to congestion caused by the lava flow. To avoid safety risks in the event of an eruption from Mauna Loa, Mayor Harry Kim has signed an emergency rule prohibiting parking and walking on highway shoulders. Hawai’i Revised Statutes Section 127A-29(a) provides legal authority for state agencies to take whatever actions are necessary in response to such a volcanic event.

2. Tsunami warnings

It is possible that an eruption from Mauna Loa could trigger a tsunami, so people should be prepared for the potential impacts. The Hawaiʻi County Civil Defense Agency has provided numerous resources to help individuals prepare, including maps of inundation zones and hazard areas and alerts about any potential volcanic activity. Additionally, the Mauna Loa National Park has closed the summit area to visitors due to safety concerns. Those living near or visiting Hawaii should pay close attention to volcano warnings available at HVO and make sure they understand what each warning level means. Finally, it is important that everyone stays up-to-date on current news regarding Mauna Loa activity in order to stay safe in case of an eruption.

3. Evacuations

Evacuations may be necessary in the event of an eruption from Mauna Loa due to its proximity to inhabited areas. The volcano could potentially spew out ash, lava and gas that can be hazardous to people, homes, and businesses located nearby. Proper evacuation plans should be in place so that those living in the area can get to safety quickly and efficiently.

4. Health risks from exposure to ash and other airborne particles

People with respiratory illnesses or sensitivities may face health risks associated with exposure to an active volcano, such as Mauna Loa. These risks can include difficulty breathing, chest tightness, coughing and throat irritation due to the presence of ash and other volcanic particles in the air. Additionally, volcanic gases can cause eye irritation, nausea and headaches. It is important for people living near an active volcano to remain aware of their environment and take all necessary precautions when possible.

5. Damage to infrastructure from ash and other airborne particles

The infrastructure that could be damaged by an eruption from Mauna Loa includes roads, power lines, and buildings. Ashfall associated with the eruption could also damage crops and harm animals. People with respiratory illnesses or sensitivities should remain aware of potential low air quality due to vog resulting from the eruption.

6. Disruption to air travel

An eruption from Mauna Loa could disrupt air travel due to the ash and volcanic gases that are released, which can cause damage to jet engines and reduce visibility for pilots. The ash particles in the air can also clog filters in jet engines, causing them to malfunction. Additionally, volcanic gases released during an eruption could result in hazardous air quality conditions that would be dangerous for passengers and crew if they were forced to remain on board aircrafts.

7. Disruption to shipping and transportation

The potential impacts of an eruption from Mauna Loa on shipping and transportation are unknown, but could be significant. Airlines may experience disruptions in their services due to the eruption, while EV companies are especially reliant on fleets of electrified vehicles which could be affected by any disruption in the transportation sector. SFO airport has plans in place to cope with any potential disruptions. Residents and visitors downslope of Mauna Loa should have emergency preparedness plans ready in case of an evacuation. While it is impossible to predict the full extent of any potential impacts at this time, The Visitors and Convention Bureau has issued an update on the current situation with the Mauna Loa eruption that advises travelers to stay informed about local developments.

8. Loss of electricity, water, and other essential services

The consequences of an eruption from Mauna Loa could be devastating. It could cause widespread damage and loss of life, as well as the rapid release of large amounts of greenhouse gases, leading to global climate change. Those in the area should prepare for potential evacuation orders if an eruption were to occur.

9. Loss of livelihoods due to disruption to businesses

The economic impacts of an eruption from Mauna Loa in November 2022 could be far-reaching. Businesses may face layoffs, as they try to adjust to the losses associated with reduced visibility, ashfall accumulation and other damage caused by the eruption. Companies will need to make adjustments in areas such as finance, marketing and logistics in order to survive during this time period. People with respiratory illnesses should remain indoors and cover their nose and mouth if they must go outside due to the presence of ash particles in the air that can be harmful if inhaled. The public is advised of reduced visibility due to smoke from erupting lava flows, ash fall accumulation up to one quarter inch which can harm crops and animals, as well as minor equipment and infrastructure damage.

10. Environmental damage caused by exposure to ash and other airborne particles

People with respiratory illnesses or sensitivities may be at risk of experiencing adverse health effects from exposure to ash and other airborne particles produced by an eruption. Those affected should stay indoors to avoid inhaling the ash particles and take precautions against low air quality due to vog.

 

How will the local communities be affected by a potential eruption?

1. Potential disruption of transportation routes

A potential eruption from Mauna Loa could disrupt transportation routes in the local community by clogging roads with lava fragments, triggering road closures due to hazardous conditions, and making it difficult for drivers to access their destinations. Furthermore, the emergency rule prohibiting parking and walking on the shoulders of highways in the vicinity of an active lava flow is likely to cause traffic issues as well.

2. Possible damage to infrastructure

The infrastructure of downslope communities is not threatened by a potential eruption from Mauna Loa in November 2022, providing some level of safety and comfort to those living in the area.

3. Impact on local businesses

Local businesses near the Mauna Loa volcano may experience disruptions in their operations due to the potential eruption in November 2022. Reduced visibility and ashfall may cause property damage, reduced customer foot traffic, and disruption of supply chains. Businesses may need to take precautions such as closing temporarily or relocating staff away from affected areas. Additionally, crops and animals nearby could be harmed as a result of the eruption, leading to further economic losses for local businesses.

4. Health risks posed by air quality

In the event of a volcanic eruption, health risks are posed by air quality due to the presence of volcanic ash and fumes. People with respiratory illnesses or sensitivities should monitor air quality closely, as inhalation of these substances can cause serious health issues. Vog, a dangerous mixture of gases created by an eruption, is also a hazard to be aware of and avoid. In order to help protect people from these risks, Governor David Ige has issued an Emergency Proclamation for the Mauna Loa Eruption in November 2022 which will make available all necessary emergency responders and allow for quick action if needed.

5. Environmental damage caused by lava

Lava can cause a variety of environmental damages, such as burning trees and vegetation and contaminating water supplies with chemicals and radioactive materials. It can also damage soil, water supplies, and other natural resources, as well as reducing air quality. Lava can also be hazardous to humans; exposure to it can cause breathing problems due to the fumes it produces, while Pele’s hair (small glass particles) created when lava rapidly cools is sharp enough to be harmful if dug into.

6. Displacement of people and wildlife

Local communities near the Mauna Loa eruption in November 2022 may be impacted in a variety of ways. People living near the volcano may experience displacement due to evacuation orders and disruption of essential services such as electricity and water. Roads and highways could also be blocked off, resulting in transportation delays. Additionally, ashfall from the eruption can affect air quality, leading to respiratory issues for those nearby. To prepare for these potential impacts, The American Red Cross is providing shelters in Kailua-Kona and Pahala that are open to people with pets, who should bring essential items such as medicines, important documents, and protective gear.

7. Increased seismic activity

Increased seismic activity is a key indication of the potential for an eruption. Seismic activity can provide valuable data about the state of a volcano and may offer warnings to nearby populations in order to help prepare them for an impending eruption. In addition, seismic activity can be tracked to gauge when an eruption is more likely to occur, which could give scientists and local officials time to prepare and make necessary safety arrangements.

8. Changes to local weather patterns

During and after a volcanic eruption, local weather patterns can be expected to change significantly. Volcanic ash can accumulate in the atmosphere and cause reduced visibility. Dust particles, including sulfur dioxide gas, can spread through the air causing respiratory irritation. Ashfall accumulation of up to one quarter inch is possible, resulting in potential harm to crops and animals as well as minor damage to equipment. People with respiratory illnesses should take caution by remaining indoors during such eruptions and wear masks if they must go outside.

9. Potential flooding

Local communities near the Mauna Loa volcano should be aware of potential flooding that may occur due to the eruption in November 2022. Flooding could cause damage to residential and agricultural areas, potentially leading to serious economic loss and disruption of local livelihoods. Communities should also prepare for extended periods of road closures, utility disruptions, and hazardous air quality. The USGS has stated that lava flows are not a threat to downslope communities however it is important for them to be aware of other potential hazards associated with volcanic activity such as flooding.

10. Possible disruption of communications networks

The local communities could be significantly impacted by a potential eruption from Mauna Loa in November 2022. Possible impacts could include ash, smoke, and lava that could damage resources and infrastructure. Residents should stay informed of any warnings or updates and heed them to ensure the safety of their community.

 

What are some strategies for preparing for an eruption?

1. Stay informed of any potential volcanic activity by monitoring local news sources and scientific websites.

Staying informed of potential volcanic activity is important in order to be prepared for any changes that may occur. This includes staying up-to-date on eruptions from volcanoes around the world, such as the Mauna Loa volcano in Hawaii and the Sakurajima volcano in Japan. It is also important to be aware of large eruptions, such as the Tongan archipelago eruption which was recently recorded as the largest ever eruption. Being aware of potential volcanic activity can help people prepare for any destruction that might occur due to an eruption or other related hazards.

2. Familiarize yourself with the warning signals and evacuation plans in the event of a volcanic eruption.

Residents of Hawaii should take precautions in case of an eruption from Mauna Loa. The Hawaiʻi County Civil Defense Agency provides up-to-date information on volcano hazards, and HVO (Hawaii Volcano Observatory) offers a timeline of eruptions at Mauna Loa over the past 200 years. In preparation for an eruption, it is recommended to stay away from the area, avoid ash and debris, and prepare for engine or electronics failure. Additionally, viewers can monitor the volcano in real-time using HVO’s Mauna Loa webcam. If you feel an eruption is imminent, it is essential to follow all safety protocols set forth by local authorities.

3. Develop an emergency plan for your household, including an evacuation plan and an emergency kit.

Having an emergency plan is important because it can help to ensure safety and reduce stress in the event of a natural disaster like the Mauna Loa eruption in November 2022. Planning ahead of time can include gathering essential items, such as medicine, important documents, and personal protective equipment (PPE), and knowing where to go if an evacuation is necessary. Knowing that organizations like The Salvation Army are available to provide food for evacuation shelters can be reassuring. Additionally, having a plan for your pets is also important so they will also be taken care of during the evacuation process.

4. Purchase protective gear such as masks and goggles.

One of the recommended strategies for preparing for an eruption is to evacuate.

5. Have a supply of bottled water and non-perishable food items on hand.

Having adequate supplies of bottled water and non-perishable food items on hand during an eruption is important in order to ensure the safety and well-being of those affected by the eruption. Having access to these items can provide critical support in an emergency situation as they can be used for drinking, sanitation, basic nutrition and protection from further damage.

6. Know how to safely turn off gas, electricity, and water in your home.

It is important for people who live near or below Mauna Loa to know how to turn off gas, electricity, and water in their home during an eruption due to the potential risk of volcanic gas. In addition, Pele’s hair and tears which are particles created during eruptions can be sharp and hazardous if someone were touching them while digging in the ground. Furthermore, an eruption may lead to a power outage that could leave residents stranded in their homes. Knowing how to turn off these essential utilities will help ensure safety in case of an eruption during November 2022.

7. Have a communication plan for staying in touch with family and friends.

Having a communication plan is important for staying in touch with family and friends during an eruption so that everyone is informed about the situation, can discuss plans, and offer support. Communication plans allow all parties to stay connected regardless of the distance between them, and ensure that everyone has access to updated information on the situation. This can help families prepare for any potential changes or disruptions if necessary.

8. Prepare a plan for your pets in case of an evacuation.

It is important to have a plan for pets in case of an evacuation from Mauna Loa’s eruption in November 2022 because having their presence can provide a sense of security during a stressful situation. Additionally, the Salvation Army is prepared to help residents with food and relief supplies during emergencies; however, donations designated as “disaster relief” go directly to disaster relief operations and not necessarily animal needs. Therefore, it is essential that pet owners are prepared ahead of time if they are facing the possibility of an evacuation due to the Mauna Loa eruption.

9. Have a list of emergency contacts and important phone numbers.

It is important to have a list of emergency contacts and important phone numbers when preparing for an eruption because it can be used to contact the American Red Cross, Department of Education, and other organizations for help in the event that an eruption occurs. This list can also help families stay informed about school operations in case they are impacted by the eruption. Finally, having this list of contacts will provide additional support during any transition plans that need to be communicated due to the eruption.

10. Have an alternate means of transport in case of road closures.

Having an alternate means of transport is important during an eruption because it helps people to evacuate quickly and safely, as well as allowing them to prepare for the event in advance. It also ensures that they have a way to move away from harm’s way and helps them remain calm during the emergency. The American Red Cross is working closely with the Parks and Recreation Department of Hawaii County to provide advice on what items should be packed ahead of time, such as medicine and masks, if desired. Additionally, alternate transportation can help those affected by an eruption access necessary shelter services provided by local authorities.

 

How can people stay informed about updates on the Mauna Loa situation?

1. Monitor news broadcasts and websites for updates.

People can stay informed about updates on the Mauna Loa situation by visiting a variety of websites, such as the USGS webpage which contains daily updates and other portals such as Hawaiianairlines.com, NASA Applied Sciences and Global Volcanism Program. They should also refer to information from Hawai’i County Civil Defense for preparedness plans in case evacuation is necessary.

2. Follow official accounts and sources of the Hawaii Civil Defense Agency and the US Geological Survey.

People can stay informed about the situation with Mauna Loa by monitoring news reports and staying in touch with local public safety organizations. Additionally, they should regularly check the Department of Education’s website for any updates or official school closures due to the eruption. In terms of relief, people can seek out services provided by the American Red Cross, such as its three shelters that are currently open in response to Mauna Loa’s activity. Those visiting shelters should bring essential items like medicine and masks and pets are welcome at these locations.

3. Subscribe to email or text alert services.

People can stay informed about updates on the Mauna Loa situation by following news outlets, subscribing to email newsletters, or signing up for notifications through social media platforms.

4. Follow the hashtag #MaunaLoa on social media platforms such as Twitter and Facebook.

Following the hashtag #MaunaLoa on social media is a good way to stay informed about updates on the Mauna Loa situation because it provides timely reports and warnings of any changes in the eruption. It also allows access to important information such as evacuation advisories, shelter locations, and essential items needed if traveling to Hawaii.

5. Monitor relevant news channels and sources of the Hawaii Volcanoes Observatory.

The Hawaii Volcanoes Observatory is an organization that monitors the Mauna Loa volcano and provides relevant information about its activity. The Observatory helps to warn people about potential eruptions, as well as to keep them updated on the latest situation at the volcano. By monitoring volcanic activity, they are able to provide early warning of any potential changes in eruption behavior or intensity. Their sensors can also detect emission levels of sulfur dioxide, which forms vog and could be indicative of a larger eruption than previously thought.

6. Watch videos posted by the US Geological Survey and other sources on YouTube.

People can stay informed about updates on the Mauna Loa situation by signing up for email alerts, following the official Mauna Loa website and social media accounts, and monitoring news sources for updated information.

7. Listen to podcasts and radio programs discussing the situation.

People can stay informed about updates on the Mauna Loa situation by following the USGS/HVO website, monitoring social media accounts related to the eruption, and viewing images from research cameras positioned around the volcano. Additionally, they can also monitor image sensors on satellites to detect changes in temperature that may indicate an eruption is happening. It is important to note that these image sensors may be affected by other factors such as thick fume which could lower measured temperatures.

8. Read articles and blogs related to the Mauna Loa situation.

It is important to stay informed about updates on the Mauna Loa situation because it could have an impact on global climate change. The Governor of Hawai’i, Ige, is keeping the public up to date with press briefings and scientists are monitoring the volcano for signs of an eruption which could occur in 2022. Staying informed will help avoid confusion and potential danger.

9. Attend public events and meetings discussing the situation.

People can stay informed about updates on the Mauna Loa situation by monitoring news sources such as The American Red Cross, Buckingham Palace, and various outlets covering the Supreme Court and Congress. Additionally, people should keep an eye out for important documents and personal protective equipment like masks and sanitizer that could be essential to prepare for the eruption. Finally, it is a good idea to check in with reliable authorities such as local emergency service departments for further information.

10. Join online discussion forums to stay updated.

Joining online discussion forums can be beneficial to individuals interested in improving their knowledge and skills and building relationships with other participants.

 

FAQs

What is the Mauna Loa?

Mauna Loa is the largest and most voluminous volcano in the world, making up roughly half of the Big Island of Hawaii and responsible for a large percentage of its land mass. It is one of five volcanoes on the island, collectively known as the Big Island, and has recently erupted for the first time in 38 years – its 34th recorded eruption since written history began. In regards to what can be expected from an eruption in November 2022, it is difficult to predict as volcanic activity can be highly unpredictable. However, based on past eruptions at Mauna Loa, it is likely that there could be lava flows or ash clouds that could disrupt air travel or cause other disturbances in nearby areas. Additionally, volcanic gases such as sulfur dioxide may pose a potential health risk to those living near Mauna Loa’s slopes or neighboring islands if they are exposed to prolonged inhalation of these gases.

What are the different types of lava flows?

The Mauna Loa eruption in November 2022 is expected to produce multiple lava flows. These types of lava flows can be classified into two main categories: fast-moving and slow-moving. Fast-moving lava flows travel at speeds of up to 20 miles per hour, while slow-moving ones travel at up to 1 mile per hour. Knowing the speed and distance of the lava flow is important for predicting its impact on surrounding areas, as well as for safety purposes -fast moving lava can pose a greater threat than slower moving flows.

What are the consequences of an eruption?

The consequences of an eruption vary depending on the type of volcano and the magnitude of the eruption. For example, a stratovolcano like Mount St. Helens could cause an explosive eruption that leads to ashfall, engine or electronics failures, and possible loss of life or property damage. Shield volcanoes such as Mauna Loa may produce large amounts of lava flows that can drown nearby communities. Kīlauea is one of the most active volcanoes in the world and its eruptions can result in devastating impacts on local populations. Therefore, it is important to prepare for any potential volcanic activity by having evacuation plans in place and staying up-to-date with information from local authorities regarding expected volcanic activity.

How long do eruptions typically last?

Past eruptions of Mauna Loa have typically lasted a few weeks, and the current eruption is expected to be no different. As of November 2022, it is likely that the eruption will still be ongoing with lava flows and fountains present. There should not be any risk to property outside the Northeast Rift Zone during this time. The ground may continue to shake due to magma emerging from the volcano.

What is the risk of an eruption?

The potential risk of an eruption at the Mauna Loa Volcano in November 2022 includes lava covering houses and farms, as well as possible exposure to volcanic gas and hazardous particles like Pele’s hair and tears. Additionally, people near the area should be aware that a possible eruption at the Kilauea volcano could have serious consequences for the surrounding area.

What are the hazards of an eruption?

The potential dangers of being caught in an eruption include lava flow, volcanic gas, vog, ash fallout, engine failures, and electrical shocks. When hot lava erupts, it can create glass particles which can be sharp and dangerous if people are not careful. It is important to evacuate if needed as the glass particles may travel far enough to cause harm. People should also be cautious in areas near volcanoes and avoid any activities that could increase their exposure to the various hazards associated with a volcanic eruption.

What is the difference between a shield volcano and a rift zone?

  • A shield volcano is formed when magma rises up through the earth’s surface and builds a dome-shaped mountain.
  • A rift zone is a crack in the earth’s surface that separates two different tectonic plates.
  • A shield volcano often has a caldera at its summit, while a rift zone may not have one.
  • A shield volcano is a type of volcano that has a solid outer layer or shield.
  • A rift zone is a type of volcano where the Earth’s surface has been broken into two or more divisions by geological faults or cracks.
  • Rift zones are typically more explosive because magma and ash escape from the Earth’s surface faster than from a shield volcano.
  • The rift zone is larger, has more active eruptions, and is more dangerous.
  • Shield volcanoes are less active and have lower emissions.

What is the difference between an eruption and an explosion?

  • An eruption is when magma rises to the surface and flows out.
  • An explosion is when magma violently breaks free from the Earth’s surface and blasts into the air.
  • An eruption is when ash rises from a volcano, while an explosion is when the magma rises too fast and explodes.
  • Shield volcanoes are found in many different places around the world, but Mount St Helens is the only one that has had an explosion eruption.
  • An eruption usually happens when the magma is cooler, drier and more fluid, while an explosion happens when gas accumulates in the magma and causes it to explode.
  • An eruption is the process of a volcano releasing lava, ash and gas.
  • An explosion, on the other hand, is the sudden release of energy that creates a loud noise and destructive forces.
  • An eruption is a gradual release of gas, while an explosion is a sudden release of gas.
  • Eruptions can sometimes be less destructive than explosions, because they may give warning time for people or infrastructure to evacuate.
  • An eruption can also cause physical damage while an explosion can cause widespread destruction and loss of life.

What is the difference between lava and magma?

  • Magma is molten rock, while lava is the liquid form of this molten rock.
  • Magma tends to be stickier, which makes it more likely to explode when it rises. By contrast, lava is more fluid and allows its gas to escape.
  • Mauna Loa is a shield volcano, named because the long, broad flanks built up by repeated lava flows give it the appearance of a warrior’s shield.
  • Lava is made of molten rock, while magma is the hot ash-like substance that fuels volcanoes.
  • Volcanic gas is a major concern with lava flow; as long as people are aware of the risks and take precautions, they should be fine.
  • When lava erupts, it creates glass particles called “Pele’s hair” and “Pele’s tears.”
  • Magma is molten rock that is under the earth’s surface, while lava is molten rock that has been expelled from a volcano.
  • Magma is denser than lava and can’t flow very far, while lava can flow quite a distance and may form dangerous rocks called “lahars.”
  • Magma can be bright red, white, or black due to the minerals it contains, while lava may be either dark or light-colored.
  • Both magma and lava are molten rocks, but magma is the hotter of the two.
  • Magma is formed from the earth’s mantle, while lava comes from a volcano’s eruption.
  • Lava cools faster than magma because it has a lower melting point.

What are the dangers of lava?

Lava is made up of glass particles that can be dangerous if someone gets caught in the flow. The danger posed by lava is exacerbated by its high rate of eruption and the fact that it can travel quickly down the slopes. Lava can be dangerous if it reaches the surface as it may cause burns or other injuries. It can also cover houses, farms, and neighborhoods depending on where it flows, potentially causing destruction and displacement of people living there. Additionally, volcanic gas such as vog has potential to cause respiratory problems so health officials are urging people to avoid outdoor exercise when an eruption occurs.

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