Friday | July 01, 2016
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Old video of dramatic crater collapse causes new stir

A YouTube video featuring Pu‘u ‘O‘o’s crater collapse in 2011 caused some confusion Friday morning.

“It was unfortunate situation someone noticed it was the third anniversary of the Kamoamoa fissure eruptions on Kilauea’s east rift zone, and apparently someone posted the video showing the collapse of Pu‘u ‘O‘o during that event and the caption stated the date and failed to include the year,” Janet Babb, geologist at U.S. Geological Survey Hawaiian Volcano Observatory, said.

“Everything is as it has been. There’s been no significant changes and no collapse,” she said.

The video went viral after the Center for the Study of Active Volcanoes posted it on their Facebook page.

“It’s because the CSAV didn’t put the year on their Facebook post when they re-posted the ‘old’ video. We’re getting a ton of calls and inquiries,” Jessica Ferracane, HVO public affairs liaison, said.

Babb said nothing has changed significantly at the volcano in the last month or two.

“Kilauea continues to erupt with two active vents, one at the summit and the other on the east rift zone. At Pu‘u ‘O‘o, there’s a vent on northeast side feeding lava flows that are slowly moving toward the northeast.

“The flows that are going to the northeast have advanced into forested area, very slowly, along the margin of the flows. The trees that are burning are creating wood smoke that, depending on wind direction, can be blown into residential areas,” she said.

Babb and fellow Jim Kauahikaua, geophysicist at HVO, will be speaking at the old Kona airport pavilion in Kailua on Tuesday night at 6 p.m. where they’ll be talking about the lava flow people see along Highway 11 as they drive from Ka‘u to Kona.

To view the video, visit

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