He says officials used property records to determine which structures are homes because it can be hard to tell from aerial surveys.
Hawaii County Civil Defense told residents of sections of the Leilani Estates community to leave their homes.
Massiva lava fountains shoot out from active fissures along Kilauea's east rift zone in lower Puna
Since Hawaii's Kilauea volcano began a once-in-a-century-scale eruption on 3 May, authorities have shut down the plant, removed more than 60,000 gallons of flammable liquid, and deactivated wells that tap into steam and gas deep in the Earth's core. In the absense of wind, vog can accumulate in one area, which people should evacuate if the pollution escalates.
Halemaumau Crater is producing small bursts of volcanic ash.More news: Confetti falls at start of Game 7 vs. Cavs
At noon Sunday an ash column reached almost 10,000 ft, it said: "Additional explosive events that could produce minor amounts of ashfall downwind are possible at any time".
The plant's spokesman Mike Kaleikini was quoted as saying that no release of hydrogen sulfide had been detected on the site so far, which is the biggest concern if lava were to hit the geothermal wells.More news: Hurricane season 2018 predictions: how bad will we get hit this year?
After many tense days situated at the edge of voluminous volcanic fissures that sent lava mostly in the opposite direction, the geothermal plant is now expected to come into contact with another lobe of lava that advanced onto PGV property overnight, after crossing Pohoiki Road on Saturday. "That well, along with a second well 100 feet away, are stable and secured, and are being monitored", emergency officials said in a 6 p.m. statement.
Lava from the Kilauea volcano has halted after reaching a geothermal power plant on the Big Island on Sunday, approaching wells that have been capped to protect against the release of toxic gas should they mix with lava.More news: Ricciardo celebrates Monaco win with epic belly flop
Hawaiian residents fear an explosive emission of deadly hydrogen sulphide and other gases should wells be ruptured.