PAHOA, Hawaii (AP) — Geologists say the Big Island’s Kilauea volcano could erupt explosively and send boulders, rocks and ash into the air around its summit caldera in coming weeks.

The U.S. Geological Survey said Wednesday the risk will rise if the lava drops below the groundwater level beneath the summit’s caldera or craterlike basin. That’s because an influx of water inside could cause steam-driven explosions.

The agency says the volcano may eject blocks up to two yards in diameter a little less than a mile away.

Aluminum roofing material lays on the foundation of a home that was engulfed by lava along Leilani Avenue. Puna, Hawaii.

Aluminum roofing material lays on the foundation of a home that was engulfed by lava along Leilani Avenue in the Puna District of the Big Island.

Cory Lum/Civil Beat

It may also send pebbles shooting into the air several miles away.

There’s also potential for ash, steam and sulfur dioxide emissions.

Kilauea is one of the world’s most active volcanoes.

Mick Kalber is about to grab his golf clubs that his dad gave him at his residence when the county allowed residents to go into Leilani Estates to check on their homes. Shortly later an alert ordering immediate evacuation due to poisonous sulfuric dioxide fumes.

Mick Kalber grabs the golf clubs that his dad gave him after county allowed residents to go into Leilani Estates to check on their homes.

Cory Lum/Civil Beat

It has destroyed 36 structures since it began releasing lava into a Big Island residential neighborhood last week.

On Tuesday, police went door-to-door to evacuate residents near two new vents emitting dangerous volcanic gases in Hawaii.

The vents emerged on Tuesday near the spots where lava has been pouring into streets and backyards for the past week.

Molala Street in Leilani Estates after lava flowed over the road.

Molala Street in Leilani Estates after lava flowed over the road.

Cory Lum/Civil Beat

Authorities initially ordered nearly 2,000 residents to leave two communities in the Big Island’s mostly rural district of Puna last Thursday.

But the new vents prompted Hawaii County to issue a cellphone alert ordering stragglers in the Lanipuna Gardens area to get out immediately. Police followed up with personal visits.

Fourteen vents have opened since the current lava breakout began. The lava has destroyed 36 structures.

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