Lava update

UPDATE 22 OCT, as of 00:01
HVO stepped right up and made a reasonable announcement. So did Civil Defense which also provided a video.

Map:  http://hvo.wr.usgs.gov/maps/uploads/image-164.jpg

HVO: http://hvo.wr.usgs.gov/activity/kilaueastatus.php

CD video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=npD2ItWo0xs#t=131

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This is HVO’s assessment as of this morning. It’s a bit confusing because it presents a lot of disparate facts but does not tie them together in an understandable manner. I believe it says this:

-The former tip of the flow advanced ~25 yards in some direction, presumably downhill, but it is no longer the tip of the flow so this information is useless.

-The southeast lobe advanced ~100 yards in some direction, presumably downhill, and overtook the former tip of the flow by some unknown distance. Because we don’t say how far it has actially advanced past the former front or in what direction it is traveling or at what speed, this information is useless.

-One or more connected but separate flows are ~.6 miles from Apa’a St. One or both are still flowing downhill at the same but different places and in the same or different directions and both are still moving together but at different speeds – or one has been subsumed by the other, or whatever.

-HBO geologists will do a site inspection today in an effort to find out what we are talking about. Hopefully one of them will be able to phrase the Activity Summary in coherent terms.

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Activity Summary: Kīlauea continued to erupt at its summit and within the East Rift Zone, and gas emissions remained elevated. There was no significant change in ground tilt at the summit, and there was no no net change in lava lake level. At the East Rift Zone, Civil Defense observed this morning that the lobe on the southeast side of the June 27th flow advanced about 90 meters (100 yards) since yesterday and overtook the former leading tip of the flow. The former tip also advanced, but only by about 20 m (25 yd). All flow activity remains approximately 0.6 miles from Apa’a St/Cemetery Rd.
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Because they haven’t managed to produce a sensible statement by this evening, I will attempt to generate one for them with the data they provided in the paragraph above. I can glean further data from deeper drilling, but the those data which are unclear here are never made clear at any point.

Tom’s Activity Summary:

The southeast lobe of the flow overtook the previous front and may have simply moved past it, creating multiple advancing flow lines, or combined with it, and is advancing toward Apa’a St., on one or more paths near the line of steepest descent, or not. The flow is now approximately .6 miles from Apa’a street by the most direct line, or the most likely path, or neither. Because we can’t be arsed to post any data in the same unit of measurement as the rest, we expect you to convert approximately .6 miles into approximately 1056 yards, or approximately 965.606 metres or approximately 3168 feet or approdimately .966 kilometres and figure out where the lava flow actually is – approximately.

But because we won’t tell you how fast the flow FRONT is advancing (regardless of which break-out is now in the lead) or how far the FLOW ADVANCE has traveled FROM THE LAST POINT WE MEASURED, which are the only two measurements important to the public, or how we determined the definition of .6 miles, it won’t help you. It’s only an approximation in any case.

Our expertise is superceded by our inability to articulate it in any meaningful fashion.

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I make the following offer to HVO and Civil Defense. Provide me with the exact LAT/LONG or GPS coordinates, ONE OR THE OTHER CONSISTENTLY, of the farthest advance as well as any digital photos you acquire in a timely manner and I will produce maps and press releases for your use, updated at every new measurement. I will do the graphics and the math and I will provide my services – as well as accurate data at no cost whatsoever.

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