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Hawaii asks for US help with volcano disaster

Evacuee Jon Warner, left, walks through the rain with son Ethan, right, and daughter Iris after picking up some basic necessities at a makeshift donation center, on May 8, 2018, in Pahoa, Hawaii. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)

PAHOA, Hawaii (AP) -- Hawaii's governor is asking President Donald Trump to declare the state a disaster because of earthquakes and a volcanic eruption on the Big Island.

Gov. David Ige said Thursday the disaster is so severe that direct federal help is needed.

State officials estimate it will cost more than $2.9 million to protect residents over the next 30 days. The costs will skyrocket if there needs to be large-scale air and sea evacuations.

Two subdivisions were ordered to evacuate last week after lava oozed from cracks in the ground, burning down some two dozen homes.

Ige says there's potential for a larger-scale evacuation as more fissures open. He says mass evacuation would be beyond county and state capabilities.

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