There may be a volcano eruption but Hawaii is still safe to visit.
Despite days of eruption from Kilauea volcano, the Hawaii Tourism Authority insists there is “no reason at this time for travelers to change or alter their leisure or business plans.”
It is only a 10-square mile section of residential housing that has been affected by the lava, according to authorities. Since the lava flow began last week, it has destroyed 35 homes. The volcano is dangerous, but only for those in the evacuation zone.
All flights to and from Kona Airport are operating as usual. Hotels remain open. Businesses and schools have reopened. Limited sections of Volcanoes National Park reopened last week following a two-day closure.
“Slipping in the tub at the hotel is just as likely as any danger coming from the volcano to the majority of the tourism spots,” Ross Birch, executive director of the Hawaii Island Visitors and Convention Bureau, told the Washington Post. “Hilo is the closest area that has hotels and it’s really unaffected.”
Air quality directly around the eruption is the only health risk that state officials have identified. “Vog,” or hazy post-volcano air pollution, contaminates the air with sulfur dioxide. The International Volcanic Health Hazard Network and Department of Health are operating a “vog watch” to inform visitors and residents about current air quality.
Travelers to Hawaii with questions are encouraged the call the Hawaii Tourism call center at 1-800-GO-HAWAII (1-800-464-2924) and stay tuned for alerts.