"It's a attractive spot", she said Monday. 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.
"Destruction from the flow is just off the scale", said Ikaika Marzo, 34, a tour operator on the Big Island who has gained a large following on social media by meticulously documenting Kilauea's eruption. Mesmerizing video captured by a US Geological Survey helicopter shows the shallow bay rapidly filling in with cooling lava.
"Nobody knows what comes next as far as the lava goes", Snyder told The Washington Post.
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Such a tally would put property losses from the current upheaval of Kilauea, which entered its 34th day on Tuesday, on par with 215 structures destroyed by lava during all 35 years of the volcano's last eruption cycle, which began in 1983.
"It's not big enough", Cindi Preller, geologist and duty scientist at the Oahu office of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, told ABC News. Officials had issued mandatory orders for residents of Leilani Estates and those in Kapoho Beach and Vacationland were advised to leave by 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. It was where vacationers enjoyed tide pools, snorkeling and picnics, reported CNN affiliate Hawaii News Now. Okabe estimated there are several hundred homes in each of the two subdivisions. "That coastline is really important to us- a place where we spent time with our family", said Franny Brewer who lives in upper Puna.
Thousands of people have been displaced, and the slow-moving nature of the event has many living in a state of agonizing uncertainty.