New image debunks misconception of scale of Big Island lava flow

Posted at 5:18 PM, May 24, 2018
and last updated 2018-05-24 17:18:00-04

KILAUEA VOLCANO, BIG ISLAND (HawaiiNewsNow) - As anxious residents scour the internet for the latest information on the Kilauea eruptions, authorities have also been dealing with a slew of misconceptions and rumors circulating on social media.

The latest concern: The amount of land the eruptions have been covering.  

The USGS shared an image on its Twitter page that compares what people imagine the lava flow to look like on the Big Island versus the actual area it’s covering.

The image gives a good sense of scale and how the lava flows have been affecting only a small region of the island, though it’s the ashfall that’s reaching areas beyond Kilauea.

Businesses and tourism officials are concerned about the economic impact as visitors consider canceling their vacation plans over fears of lava and toxic gas.

Authorities are reminding those looking for information to refer to official sources, including the USGS website.

This is the latest map posted by USGS on Wednesday: 

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