4 facts about U.S Military relief efforts to contain Hawaii's Kilauea volcanic eruption

Kaylah Jackson
May 22, 2018 - 2:52 pm

(U.S. Air National Guard photo by Senior Airman John Linzmeier)


Lava flow from the Kilauea volcano on Hawaii's Big Island is still posing major safety threats to homes, businesses and more recently, energy wells at a geothermal plant. Since it's eruption, Joint Task Force 5-0 (JTF 5-0) along with other military units have been monitoring the situation and stepping in to support those who live on the island.

Yesterday, the National Guard published this alarming video of an up close and personal look of the Kilauea eruption.

Currently, at least 17 eruptions are currently emitting toxic gases and lava and nearly 50 structures have been destroyed, including a few hundred homes.

Here's a current breakdown of what the U.S. military is doing to help contain the lava flow and protect residents:

  • The Coast Guard is enforcing a Lava Entry Safety Zone of 300 meters for waters surrounding the Kilauea Volcano active lava flow where it enters into the Pacific Ocean. There are also two team members of the Coast Guard Pacific Strike Team assisting the EPA with air quality monitoring in addition to a Coast Guard cutter in the area for large scale evacuation of island residents, if needed.
  • An air crew from the 22nd Airlift Wing Squadron based out of Travis AFB has delivered support in the form of a C-5M Super Galaxy aircraft carrying a double recirculating cement mixer trailer.
  • More than 150 National Guard troops are on the ground to assist with evacuations and man checkpoints in front of the lava flow. Members of the 93rd Weapons of Mass Destruction Civil Support Team are monitoring air quality.
  • Members of the JTF 5-0 are monitoring the evacuation zone, conducting patrols and helping police man checkpoints.

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