Almost from the 1849 publication of the term pit crater, volcanologists have disagreed about the parameters differentiating these features from other vertical volcanic structures. Kaluaiki is a jameo giving entry to Thurston Lava Tube in Hawaii Volcanoes National Park. Long-standing misidentification of it as a pit crater is an example of misunderstandings arising from the lack of a clear definition of pit crater. In general, pit craters are unrelated to lava tube caves genetically, but two special cases are discussed. One probably is genetically related to a rift tube deep below the surface; the other is a complex of a small pit crater with a partial rim of accreted plates plus an ordinary-seeming lava tube cave. The term pit crater should be redefined in such a way that it excludes collapses or subsidences related to ordinary superficial lava tubes and open vertical volcanic conduits. Otherwise, a non-definition like that currently listed for agglomerate may be appropriate.
Halliday, William R..
"Pit Craters", lava tubes, and open vertical volcanic conduits in Hawaii: a problem in terminology.
International Journal of Speleology,
Available at: http://scholarcommons.usf.edu/ijs/vol27/iss1/12