HAWAII (CBSMiami)– New volcanic fissures opening up in a residential area of Hawaii’s Big Island caused police to go door-to-door telling remaining residents to leave.
The new fissures are the latest episode in nearly a week of constant volcanic activity which has seen vents emitting dangerous gases and lava pouring into streets and backyards.
Authorities ordered nearly 2,000 residents to leave two communities in the mostly rural district of Puna on Hawaii’s Big Island last Thursday.
Some ignored the order and stayed to watch over their property.
But on Tuesday, the emergence of the two new vents prompted Hawaii County to issue a cellphone alert ordering stragglers in Lanipuna Gardens to get out immediately.
Police followed up with personal visits.
Aerial video from the U.S. Geological Survey shows lava bubbling through a large crack in a road.
Officials warn that lava could flow downhill and burn areas that are not currently in danger, and toxic volcanic gas could kill people, especially the elderly and those with breathing problems.
Hawaii Gov. David Ige told evacuees he has called the White House and the Federal Emergency Management Agency to tell officials that he believes the state will need help to deal with the volcano on the Big Island.
There are 14 lava-and-gas producing fissures in Leilani Estates, after the two new ones formed Tuesday.
But the flow of lava is not constant.
A total of 36 structures, including 26 confirmed homes, have been destroyed.
Aerial surveys cannot make out whether some of the structures are homes or other types of buildings.
The next problem facing residents: acid rain and volcanic smog.
In addition to the lava and volcanic ash spewing out of the ground, officials have warned of dangerous levels of sulfur dioxide gas.
With high chances of rain in the Big island on Thursday and Friday, the dangerous gas could lead to another menace known as acid rain.