HONOLULU (KHON2) — The Hawaii Board on Geographic Names (HBGN) has approved the name Ahuʻailāʻau as the official title for Fissure 8, which appeared in the Puna District of Hawaii Island during the 2018 Kīlauea eruption.
HBGN says Ahuʻailāʻau refers to the altar of the volcano deity ‘Ailā‘au.
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The name was selected from dozens of community submitted proposals.
“We are excited to have a name that provides a sense of place, history and cultural identity to the fissure that took with it so many memories,” Mayor Mitch Roth said. “To understand the power of mother nature is to understand the stories and context in which our ancestors have explained it. Ahuʻailāʻau is an embodiment of how Hawaiians have explained the natural phenomenon for generations, and it is integral to our understanding of this place.”
Proposals to name Fissure 8 were accepted by HBGN through June 30, 2019.
“The board wishes to extend its appreciation to all who provided insight and information during the board’s deliberations,” HBGN Chairman Marques Hanalei Marzan said. “We had the opportunity to travel to Puna several times before the pandemic to hear and listen to testimony provided. While it was unfortunate that we could not take this action on island, we are glad modern meeting platforms, such as Zoom, have provided a way for us to keep in contact with all interested in this process.”