A single mother of two has spoken of her devastation after her three-bedroom house was consumed by lava when Hawaii’s Kilauea volcano erupted.
Amber Makuakane Kane, 37, a teacher, said her home in Leilani Estates on the island of Hawaii was destroyed by lava.
The dwelling was across from a fissure that opened on Friday, when ‘there was some steam rising from all parts of the yard, but everything looked fine,’ Makuakane said.
On Saturday, she received alerts from her security system that motion sensors throughout the house had been triggered.
She later confirmed that lava had covered her property.
Makuakane grew up in the area and lived in her house for nine years. Her parents also live in Leilani Estates.
‘The volcano and the lava – it’s always been a part of my life,’ she said. ‘It’s devastating… but I’ve come to terms with it.’
Amber Makuakane Kane, 37, a teacher, said her home in Leilani Estates on the island of Hawaii was destroyed by lava. Pictured: Amber with her children, Alana and Aaron
Amber explained she is now busy trying to find a home for her children, four-year-old Aaron and six-year-old Alana. She added: ‘I just put all my faith and trust in God and I know that He has a greater plan for me and my family, and I know there is a reason for everything that happens’
A robust fissure eruption in Leilani Estates near Pahoa sends a massive flow into the subdivision, consuming all in its path – including Amber’s home
Twenty-six homes have been destroyed by spewing lava from Hawaii’s Kilauea volcano. Pictured above is a 2,000 foot long fissure that erupted within the Leilani Estates subdivision and ignited a home
Leilani Estates, a subdivision in the mostly rural district of Puna, is at greatest risk. Authorities ordered more than 1,700 residents to evacuate from there and nearby Lanipuna Gardens
A handout photo made available by the United States Geological Survey (USGS) shows the entire north portion of the Overlook crater in the Mount Kilauea volcano, Pahoa, Hawaii
Lava flows towards a home with a swimming pool while consuming another nearby in this Sunday photograph taken from the air
Lava burns across a road in the Leilani Estates subdivision as a man takes pictures of the flow. In the foreground, plants grow through the tarmac
She told KOHN2 that she started grabbing items from her home as the lava crept towards her home in Makamae Street, just three roads from the first lava outbreak.
She added: ‘At some point, I was pacing back and forth in the house not knowing what to grab, what I should take and at the same time trying to process what is happening.
‘Also trying to find a place within me like this may be the last time I ever walk through my house.’
Makuakane said her son, who is four, keeps asking: ‘Mommy, can we go home?’.
She explained she is now busy trying to find a home for her children, four-year-old Aaron and six-year-old Alana.
She added: ‘I just put all my faith and trust in God and I know that He has a greater plan for me and my family, and I know there is a reason for everything that happens.’
A GoFundMe campaign has already raised nearly $28,000 from donations to help Makuakane recover from the disaster.
The Kilauea volcano destroyed at least 26 homes and spewed lava hundreds of feet into the air, leaving evacuated residents unsure how long they might be displaced.
In revised figures on Sunday, Hawaii County officials said another four unspecified structures were covered by lava.
Lava from volcanic fissures slowly advances and overtakes structures and trees in the Leilani Estates neighborhood in the aftermath of eruptions from the the Kilauea volcano on Hawaii’s Big Island
Plume mixes with clouds above the collapsed Puu Oo crater on Kilauea volcano on Hawaii’s Big Island
Hawaii officials said the decimated homes were in the Leilani Estates subdivision, where molten rock, toxic gas and steam have been bursting through openings in the ground created by the volcano.
Some of the more than 1,700 residents who have been evacuated were allowed to briefly return to gather medicine, pets, and other necessities.
Officials say residents would be able to do so each day until further notice as authorities monitor which areas are safe.
Lava has spread around 387,500 square feet surrounding the most active fissure, though the rate of movement is slow. There was no indication when the lave might stop or how far it might spread.
‘There’s more magma in the system to be erupted. As long as that supply is there, the eruption will continue,’ U.S. Geological Survey volcanologist Wendy Stovall said.
Activity continues as a fissure eruption fountains more than 100 feet into the air near Pahoa on Sunday. Hawaiian Volcano Observatory geologists have not been able to forecast an end to the eruption
No injuries have been reported but at least 26 homes were destroyed on Hawaii’s Big Island when lava started shooting out of openings in the ground
Residents jam a street after being allowed to briefly return home to check on belongings and pets in an evacuation zone near volcanic activity yesterday
Lava burns across a road as an offering to the volcano goddess lies in the foreground in the Leilani Estates subdivision on Saturday
Lava advances along a street near a fissure in the Leilani Estates neighborhood on Saturday in a photograph provided by the US Geological Survey
Lava spews high into the air from a fissure near Pahoa in Hawaii. The number of homes destroyed climbed to 26 today
Cherie McArthur wondered what would become of her macadamia nut farm in Lanipuna Gardens, another evacuated neighborhood near Leilani Estates. One of the year’s first harvests had been planned for this weekend.
‘If we lose our farm, we don’t know where we’re going to go. You lose your income and you lose your home at the same time,’ said McArthur, who’s had the farm for about 20 years. ‘All you can do is pray and hope and try to get all the information you can.’
About 250 people and 90 pets spent Saturday night at shelters, the American Red Cross said.
The number of lava-venting fissures in the neighborhood grew overnight from eight to as many as 10, Stovall said, though some have quieted at various points. Regardless, USGS scientists expect fissures to keep spewing.
The lava could eventually be channeled to one powerful vent while others go dormant, as has happened in some previous Hawaii eruptions, Stovall said.
Kilauea, one of the world’s most active volcanoes, has been erupting continuously since 1983.
The USGS’s Hawaiian Volcano Observatory issued a notice in mid-April that there were signs of pressure building in underground magma, and a new vent could form on the cone or along what’s known as the East Rift Zone. Leilani Estates sits along the zone.
Numerous vents, each several hundred yards long, have opened in the neighborhood since Thursday following the volcano eruption
Scientists said Kilauea was likely to release more lava through additional vents, but they were unable to predict exactly where
The crater floor began to collapse Monday, triggering earthquakes and pushing lava into new underground chambers that carried it toward Leilani Estates and nearby communities. A magnitude-6.9 earthquake – Hawaii’s largest in more than 40 years – hit the area Friday.
It set Michael McGuire’s car rocking in his driveway, knocking things off his shelves and shattering glass in his cabinets near Leilani Estates.
He hoped to check on his home Sunday but realized it was too soon to be sure when, or if, it would be safe from the moving lava.
‘I’m somewhat fatalistic: if it happens, it happens,’ he said. ‘And I’m enjoying life here, so you know, you put up with a lot of things here. This is one of them.’
Noah and Laura Dawn own a retreat center about 3 miles downhill from the most active vents They were clearing out items Sunday and relocating up the coast indefinitely.
‘We’re just removing all things of value to us and precious things because I have the feeling it could get real – real, real fast,’ Noah Dawn said.