May 17, 4:17 AM, the first honest-to-gosh steam explosion like they’ve been predicting (instead of just a rock and lava explosion) sent an ash cloud up 30,000 feet. Gemini Observatory caught it on timelapse:
According to volcanologist Erik Klemetti, the blast threw some 1000-pound blocks, the only place I’ve seen this. See blog post (more pics).
Fissures continued to open, but mostly emitted slow, sticky lava that didn’t travel far. Leilani residents continued to be allowed back during the daytime.
Video: lava flow eats Mustang (dead battery; owner left it to focus on rescuing other possessions), another flow pushes through metal gate. These slow-moving, clumpy, clanking flows that pile up like a rocky bulldozer are “a’a” lava.