Alert level raised for Kilauea as volcano rumbles

Jan. 31—Hawaiian Volcano Observatory officials raised the alert level for Kilauea volcano early this morning after scientists observed "increased earthquake activity and inflationary ground deformation."

The volcano alert level was raised to a watch from an advisory, while the aviation color-code alert was raised to orange from yellow, officials said at 4:41 a.m.

The volcano is not currently erupting and the increased activity is confined within Hawaii Volcanoes National Park, HVO said.

"At this time, it is not possible to say with certainty if this activity will lead to an eruption; the activity may remain below ground," the alert said. "However, an eruption in Kilauea's summit region, within Hawaii Volcanoes National Park and away from infrastructure, is one potential outcome. Patterns of earthquake activity and ground deformation are concentrated south of the caldera region. Any new eruptive activity could occur in or near Halemaumau crater or the region south of Kilauea caldera, within the closed area of Hawaii Volcanoes National Park."