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The Pu‘u ‘Ō‘ō eruption took a destructive turn in March 1990. Breakouts from a lava tube spread lava into the Kalapana community. Images show the entire community, known for its historic sites and black sand beaches, being completely covered with lava. Bright spots in the 1989 and 1991 images are active lava flows.

A church, store, and more than 100 homes were buried under 15–25 m of lava. The devastating event finally ended in late 1990 when a new lava tube diverted lava away from Kalapana and back into Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park.


Every picture has a story to tell
Dec. 16, 1989, Landsat 4 (path/row 62/47) — Kalapana, HI, USA
Oct. 11, 1991, Landsat 5 (path/row 62/47) — Kalapana, HI, USA
Feb. 26, 2019, Landsat 8 (path/row 62/47) — Kalapana, HI, USA


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