"We've pretty much thrown everything at this event" since a series of lava fissures began emerging from cracks in neighborhood last month, Hawaii County Civil Defense Agency Administrator Talmadge Magno said Monday.
The lava is also flowing into the ocean, where it has created about 200 acres of new land, while also releasing risky gas plumes and causing explosions as the molten rock hits the cold water.
The Hawaiian Volcano Observatory warned residents to avoid the ocean entry area, as it continued to produce large plumes of lava.
Fenton said he was "amazed at the amount of devastation" he has seen and that it is "going to take a whole community effort" to help in the recovery, KGMB reports. Magno said additional workers can be called in if conditions change.
Lava from various fissures - and lately from fissure 8 exclusively - has consumed homes in Leilani Estates, the neighboring Lanipuna Gardens and farther east at the Kapoho Beach Lots and Vacationland subdivisions in Kapoho, where the once-picturesque Kapoho Bay, prized for its tidepools, was filled in. He told reporters on Monday that temblors are almost continuous at the summit and that gas emissions remain "very high".
Many people whose homes have been destroyed don't have insurance, and FEMA officials are working with local authorities to get disaster assistance to those who qualify.
An eruption at Kilauea summit jolted the area Wednesday with the force of a 5.4 magnitude natural disaster and hurled an ash plume that reached 10,000 feet above sea level. A part for repairs was expected soon, said Robert Ballard, science and operations officer for the weather service in Honolulu.
Another ongoing hazard comes from lava meeting the ocean.