‘Ballistic blocks’ shot from Hawaii volcano could mark onset of explosive eruptions

‘Ballistic blocks’ shot from Hawaii volcano could mark onset of explosive eruptions

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By Terray Sylvester PAHOA, Hawaii (Reuters) – “Ballistic blocks” the size of microwave ovens shot from Hawaii’s Kilauea volcano on Wednesday in what may be the start of explosive eruptions that could spew huge ash plumes and hurl smaller rocks for miles (km), the U.S. Geological Survey said. Such eruptions, last seen nearly a century ago, have been a looming threat since Kilauea, one of the world’s most active volcanoes, erupted nearly two weeks ago. The explosive, steam-driven eruptions could drive a 20,000-foot (6,100-meter) ash plume out of the crater, hurl boulders the size of small cars up to half a mile (800 meters) and scatter smaller rocks over 12 miles (19 km), the USGS has warned.