Hawaii volcanic haze spreads to Micronesia

A traditional hula practitioner standing on a recent lava flow from a Kilauea volcano fissure on Hawaii's Big Island on Sunday, when offerings were left in a ceremony for Madame Pele, the Hawaiian goddess of volcanoes and fire. Hula is a Hawaiian dan
A traditional hula practitioner standing on a recent lava flow from a Kilauea volcano fissure on Hawaii's Big Island on Sunday, when offerings were left in a ceremony for Madame Pele, the Hawaiian goddess of volcanoes and fire. Hula is a Hawaiian dance form accompanied by chants or songs which trace the history and culture of Hawaii.PHOTO: AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE

MAJURO (Marshall Islands) • Haze from the Kilauea volcano eruption in Hawaii blanketed the Marshall Islands 3,700km away on Sunday, as officials warned it would continue moving west.

The haze, a phenomenon known as "vog" or volcanic smog, "is spreading across Micronesia", the US National Weather Service based in Guam said.

The volcano on Hawaii's Big Island is now in its fourth week of eruptions.

The Guam weather office said haze produced by Kilauea would spread farther west and reach Kosrae, Pohnpei and possibly Chuuk in the Federated States of Micronesia over the next few days.

The Hawaii Civil Defence Agency said lava from Kilauea has covered a potentially explosive well at a geothermal power station and is threatening another, after flowing onto the site. It added that the wells "are stable and secure", but lava has never engulfed a geothermal plant anywhere in the world and the potential threat is untested.

Kilauea is the world's most active volcano and one of five on Hawaii's Big Island. It started erupting on May 3, prompting about 2,000 people to flee from their mountainside homes.

AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE, REUTERS

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on May 29, 2018, with the headline 'Hawaii volcanic haze spreads to Micronesia'. Print Edition | Subscribe