Skip to main content
U.S. flag

An official website of the United States government

USGS HVO Information Statement — Magnitude-4.1 earthquake under Kīlauea Volcano’s south flank, Island of Hawai‘i 

March 14, 2021

The U.S. Geological Survey's Hawaiian Volcano Observatory (HVO) recorded a magnitude-4.1  earthquake located beneath Kīlauea Volcano's south flank on Sunday, March 14, at 8:59 p.m., HST.

The earthquake was centered about 12 km (7 miles) southeast of Volcano, Hawai‘i, near the Hōlei Pali area of Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park at a depth of 7 km (4 miles). A map showing its location is posted on the HVO website at More details are available at the National Earthquake Information Center website at

Light to moderate shaking, with maximum Intensity of V on the Modified Mercalli Intensity Scale, has been reported across the Island of Hawai‘i.  At that intensity, significant damage to buildings or structures is not expected.  The USGS "Did you feel it?" service ( received over 140 felt reports within the first hour of the earthquake. 

According to HVO Scientist-in-Charge, Ken Hon, the earthquake had no apparent effect on Kīlauea or Mauna Loa volcanoes. “Our instrument network has not detected any changes on either Kīlauea or Mauna Loa volcano related to this earthquake. Smaller aftershocks are possible and might be felt.” HVO continues to monitor Kīlauea, Mauna Loa, and other Hawaiian volcanoes for changes.

Kīlauea's south flank has been the site of over 40 earthquakes of magnitude-4.0 or greater during the past 20 years. Most are caused by abrupt motion of the volcano's south flank, which moves to the southeast over the oceanic crust. The location, depth, and waveforms recorded as part of today's earthquake are consistent with slip along this south flank fault. 

For information on recent earthquakes in Hawaii and eruption updates, visit the USGS Hawaiian Volcano Observatory website at

Get Our News

These items are in the RSS feed format (Really Simple Syndication) based on categories such as topics, locations, and more. You can install and RSS reader browser extension, software, or use a third-party service to receive immediate news updates depending on the feed that you have added. If you click the feed links below, they may look strange because they are simply XML code. An RSS reader can easily read this code and push out a notification to you when something new is posted to our site.