H 71° L 40°
  • clear-night
    Current Conditions
    Sunny. H 71° L 40°
  • clear-day
    Sunny. H 71° L 40°
  • clear-night
    Clear. H 66° L 43°

Krmg news on demand

00:00 | 00:00


Krmg traffic on demand

00:00 | 00:00


Krmg weather on demand

00:00 | 00:00

Hawaii volcano lava destroys hundreds of homes overnight

Lava from Hawaii's Kilauea volcano destroyed hundreds more homes overnight, overtaking two oceanfront communities where residents were advised to evacuate last week, officials said Tuesday.

No injuries were reported as most residents heeded the advice to leave.

The latest lost homes were in addition to at least 117 others that were previously reported by officials since lava began spilling last month from cracks in the ground in a mostly rural district of the Big Island.

"We don't have an estimate yet, but safe to say that hundreds of homes were lost in Kapoho Beach Lots and Vacationland last night," Janet Snyder, a spokeswoman for Hawaii County, said Tuesday.

A morning overflight confirmed that lava had completely filled Kapoho Bay, inundated most of Vacationland and covered all but the northern part of Kapoho Beach Lots, scientists with the U.S. Geological Survey's Hawaiian Volcano Observatory said.

Despite earlier reports that lava claimed Big Island Mayor Harry Kim's second home in Vacationland, an aerial flyover confirmed his home is still standing, Snyder said.

County Managing Director Wil Okabe said his own vacation home in Kapoho Beach Lots was threatened. Okabe described the area as a mix of vacation rentals and year-round residences.

"For us it's more of a vacation area, but for those who live there permanently, they're trying to figure out where they're going to be living," he said. Kim and Okabe live in Hilo, the county's seat, which is more than an hour drive from the Kapoho area.

One shelter was full Tuesday, officials said.

Gov. David Ige signed a second supplemental emergency proclamation Tuesday that gives the county more options for shelters and sets criminal penalties for violating emergency rules, such as failing to evacuate and interfering with emergency workers.

Lava claimed Harry Pomerleau's home in Vacationland.

"It's a necessary evil. It's not our land. It belongs to Pele," he said, referring to the Hawaiian volcano goddess. "I have to imagine . she knows what she's doing."

Kapoho resident Mark Johnson was coming to terms with the possibility of losing his home and 5-acre citrus farm.

"I'm really kind of at peace actually," he said. "I've had 28 years of wonderful experience down there in Kapoho."

Johnson and Pomerleau evacuated last week when authorities with bullhorns arrived at 1 a.m. saying it was time to get their things and leave.

They didn't expect the lava flow to head their way.

"God only knows what it's going to do next," Johnson said.

He wants to return if lava spares his home on a ridge overlooking the ocean. But it's unclear how long it would take to re-open access to the area, he said.

Pomerleau said all of the vacation homes he did handyman work for are gone.

Thousands of people in the Puna area had to evacuate after the first fissure opened May 3. Officials issued mandatory orders for residents of Leilani Estates, and those in Kapoho Beach and Vacationland were advised to leave last Friday or risk being trapped and unreachable by emergency crews.

Homes in Kapoho Beach Lots and Vacationland are on smaller lots and closer together than those in other parts of the Puna district. Okabe estimated there are several hundred homes in each of the two subdivisions.

Those who live or vacation in the area were mourning the loss of popular tide-pools where kids enjoyed swimming.

"That coastline is really important to us— a place where we spent time with our family," said Franny Brewer who lives in upper Puna.

She reminisced about taking her daughter to swim in the ocean for the first time in a local swimming spot known as Champagne Ponds.

"I've been crying a lot," she said. "It's hard because obviously a lot of people have lost a lot more than just a beautiful place to visit and memories."


This story has been corrected to reflect that Big Island Mayor Harry Kim's second home in Vacationland has not been destroyed by lava, according to new information from the county.


AP journalist Caleb Jones contributed to this story.


Follow AP's complete coverage of the Hawaii volcano here: https://apnews.com/tag/Kilauea

Read More

There are no comments yet. Be the first to post your thoughts. or Register.

  • KRMG has previously told you about the Gathering Place banning firearms. Gerry Bender, Tulsa’s Litigation Division manager, recently told the Tulsa World police won't arrest people who violate the park's gun policy. This is reportedly because of concerns such an action would be legally challenged. Under state law, firearms are allowed to be carried on property designated by a governmental authority as a park, recreational area or fairgrounds. “TPD has had a presence at the Gathering Place since its opening and will continue to do so in order for the citizens of Tulsa to enjoy the park in a safe environment,” a Tulsa police statement reads.  “We maintain the legal authority to enforce all ordinances and State laws applicable to private spaces open to the public.” Do you believe people should be allowed to have firearms at the Gathering Place?  Let us know in the comments.  
  • You can put away your umbrella in the Tulsa area today. National Weather Service Meteorologist Chuck Hodges says we have a beautiful fall day ahead of us. “Fog should be clearing out,” Hodges said.  “We should have plenty of sun.  We are looking at highs probably in the lower 70’s.” The normal high for Tulsa this time of year is in the mid-70’s.   If you have outdoor plans Saturday night, bring a heavy coat.  The low will be close to 37 degrees.
  • This Saturday marks the 45th anniversary of the infamous ‘Saturday Night Massacre,’ when an embattled President Richard Nixon fired the special Watergate prosecutor, but only after both the Attorney General and Deputy Attorney General refused to carry out the President’s orders, and resigned from their positions. The move by President Nixon came during an ongoing legal dispute over the release of the Watergate tapes – recordings made in the Oval Office by a secret taping system that the President had installed – which ultimately contained evidence that forced Nixon from office. Special Watergate Prosecutor Archibald Cox wanted all the tapes for his investigation, but even with the backing of a federal court order, President Nixon refused to turn them over, instead offering summaries, an offer that Cox refused to accept. “I’m not looking for a confrontation,” Cox told an October 20, 1973 news conference at the National Press. “I’m certainly not out to get the President of the United States.” Several hours later, Nixon ordered that Cox be fired. The President first asked Attorney General Elliot Richardson to fire Cox. Richardson refused and quickly resigned. The same request the went to Deputy Attorney General Williams Ruckleshaus. Like Richardson, Ruckleshaus also refused and quit. Finally, the firing of Cox was carried out by Solicitor General Robert Bork. It’s a scenario that some have focused on, wondering if President Donald Trump might try to end the investigation of Special Counsel Robert Mueller into Russian interference in the 2016 elections. In an op-ed in August of 2018, Ruckleshaus drew parallels between Watergate and the current battle over the Russia investigation. “President Trump is acting with a desperation I’ve seen only once before in Washington,” Ruckleshaus wrote. “45 years ago when President Richard M. Nixon ordered the firing of special Watergate prosecutor Archibald Cox.” “Nixon was fixated on ending the Watergate investigation, just as Trump wants to shut down the Mueller investigation,” Ruckleshaus added. It took until late July of 1974 for the U.S. Supreme Court to finally order Nixon to turn over the tapes – in a unanimous 8-0 ruling. Nixon resigned soon after, on August 8, 1974.
  • Federal prosecutors in New York announced the arrest on Friday of a man who allegedly threatened to murder and assault a pair of U.S. Senators for their support of Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh, as police say the suspect placed a series of threatening telephone calls in which the man threatened to shoot the Senators if they supported the Kavanaugh nomination. In court documents unsealed on Friday, a special agent with the U.S. Capitol Police detailed a number of voice mails left by the suspect, identified as Ronald DeRisi of Smithtown, on Long Island in New York. The expletive-filled messages came during the final stages of debate on the Kavanaugh nomination, some as Kavanaugh testified for a second time before the Senate Judiciary Committee, on the same day as a woman who accused him of sexual misconduct back when they were in high school. “The male caller, who did not identify himself on the recording, stated in relevant part, that he had a “present” for Senator-1, specifically: “It’s a nine millimeter,” court documents stated. “He’s a dead man! Nine millimeter, side of the f—ing head!” police quoted the phone threats. More voice mails were allegedly left by DeRisi after Kavanaugh had been confirmed by the Senate, as he called a second Senator’s office and left threatening messages. “I’m gonna get you,” police quoted the message. “Don’t you know that guy’s a sex offender?” At one point, the suspect allegedly read off the home address of the second Senator; it was not immediately clear from the court documents what two Senators had been targeted by the phone calls. Court documents show that DeRisi pled guilty in 2015 to making threatening phone calls, and that police compared the telphone evidence from the two cases.