STORY: The skies of Hawaii’s Big Island turned a hellish bright red on Sunday (November 27) as the world’s largest active volcano, Mauna Loa, began erupting for the first time since 1984 ending its longest quiet period in recorded history.
The U.S. Geological Service says for now the lava is contained within the summit - but they have warned residents that volcanic gases and fine ash may drift their way.
Some areas of the Big Island were under an ashfall advisory issued by the National Weather Service.
Mauna Loa rises 13,679 feet above the Pacific Ocean, it's part of the chain of volcanoes that formed the islands of Hawaii.
It last erupted in March and April of 1984, sending a flow of lava within 5 miles of the island's largest city.
Scientists like Erik Klemetti of Denison University have been on alert after several earthquakes hit the area.
Erik Klemetti: “People have been expecting that Mauna Loa would erupt again only because it’s erupted a lot, and this is a pretty long period of quiet."
Hawaii's Emergency Management Agency has not yet issued any evacuation orders - they have however opened two shelters on the island as a precaution but also emphasized that there are no signs that lava will threaten populated areas.