Lava from Hawaii's Kilauea volcano destroyed more homes Tuesday, including the residence of Hawai'i County Mayor Harry Kim, emergency officials said.
Two residents of Kapoho, Dodie Jordan and Gregory Braun, shared emotional stories in Pahoa on Tuesday evening, after a lava flow consumed all of Vacationland and most of Kapoho Beach Lots the night before.
County Managing Director Wil Okabe said his own vacation home in Kapoho Beach Lots was also threatened by lava.
The latest two communities affected by the lava flow had been ordered evacuated beforehand and there were no immediate reports of any casualties.
And it not only took homes, it completely filled Kapoho Bay, extending 0.8 miles from the coastline.
A civil defense official told Reuters on Tuesday at least 60 to 80 more homes were believed to have been devoured as the lava flow, measuring about half a mile wide and 10 to 15 feet tall, inundated the adjacent subdivisions of Kapoho Beach Lots and Vacationland.
The latest Kilauea eruption began on May 3 and has unleashed towering clouds of ash, hurled bombs of lava, and dumped rivers of molten rock into the tropical countryside, engulfing lush green landscapes and serene neighborhoods without discretion. It's the second time lava has hit the ocean since the crisis began. His ocean-view property sits on a ridge near the base of Kapoho crater, and he thinks the lava could have missed it.
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"God only knows what it's going to do next", Johnson said.
Lava from Kilauea has covered an area of almost 5,000 acres, according to Hawaii Volcanoes National Park.
"I just locked my doors and walked away", 28-year Vacationland resident Betty Oberman said.
Numerous homes in the upscale gated community of Kapoho Beach Lots were valued at several million dollars each.
The Hawaii County Civil Defense agency was putting the confirmed number of buildings lost to the current eruption at 117 on Monday, mostly residential properties.
Continued earthquakes, including Sunday's magnitude 5.5 quake, damaged the overlook deck and other features at Jagger Museum in the national park, where most visitors go to see the summit lava lake, park spokeswoman Jessica Ferracane said. One home was lost in a separate 2014 lava flow in the commercial hub of Pahoa.
Thousands have been evacuated from the area, but officials fear that up to a dozen residents who chose to stay could be dead.