· Olinda fire: remains 85% contained. Estimated 1,081 acres. A helicopter was deployed before sunset yesterday, 8/22, to help reach hot spots.
· Kula fire: remains 85% contained. Estimated 202 acres. MFD crews have been extinguishing hot spots in the Kula fire using hand crews and a helicopter. Fire activity is mostly located in hard-to-reach gulches. Flareups and reports of smoke have been well within the burn area, and have not posed any threat to public safety or fire expansion.
· Lahaina fire: remains 90% contained. Estimated 2,170 acres. There are no noteworthy flareups in recent days.
· Pulehu / Kihei fire: declared 100% contained 8/12.
The Maui Fire Department (MFD) advises the public that complete extinguishment for Upcountry fires may take an extended time given the large burn area, and the nature of the rural terrain. Although containment percentages have not changed over recent days, MFD continues to reassure the public there are no active threats among the three ongoing fires.
FATALITY and SEARCH UPDATE
The most up-to-date fatality numbers and identification information are included in the Maui Police Department’s daily press release, anticipated to be issued by 6 p.m. daily. For that information, please visit: bit.ly/MauiPoliceNews . There are 115 confirmed fatalities with 100% of the single-story, residential properties searched in the disaster area. Search teams are searching multi-story residential and commercial properties. 341 emergency personnel and 50 canine units are conducting the search.
Excavators and other heavy machines are currently only being used in the Lahaina disaster area to assist emergency responders with the search and recovery process. Emergency crews are using heavy machines to move debris, including vehicles and building materials, so that first responders can safely examine properties as part of the search and recovery process. Heavy machines are not being used for any debris removal operations, and no debris removal operations are underway in Lahaina this time.
KULA HAZARDOUS MATERIAL REMOVAL
Today, 8/23, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) began work to remove and dispose of hazardous waste from properties affected by the wildfires in Kula. This work included surveying, removing, and disposing of hazardous waste materials such as: paints, cleaners, solvents, oils, batteries, and pesticides. A second phase will remove fuel from pressurized cylinders/tanks and items thought to have asbestos. Following a fire, these products require special handling and disposal, especially if their containers are damaged. These efforts will reduce potential threats to public health and safety, allowing other agencies to remove solid waste, debris, and ash in the affected areas. EPA will only remove household hazardous waste, and will immediately stop work then coordinate with police if functional firearms or suspected remains are found. During work, EPA will conduct air monitoring for particulate matter (dust-like material) and air sampling for heavy metals and asbestos. After this first phase of work is complete, EPA will apply an adhesive called “Soiltac” on any of the property’s debris and ash to prevent dust from blowing off the site. The EPA’s Soiltac is dyed pink,non-toxic, and biodegradeable. Information about hazardous waste removal in the Lahaina disaster area will be made available later.
UNSAFE WATER ADVISORY
A new, interactive map depicting the precise location of the Unsafe Water Advisory is now available at bit.ly/mauiwateradvisory . Residents can type in their address to see if their property is located within the affected area. Until further notice, residents in these areas of Lahaina and Kula should only use bottled water or potable water provided from tankers for things like drinking, brushing teeth, ice-making, and food preparation. For potable water please bring large water containers, at least 5-gallon capacity, to:
Lahaina Gateway Center
Kula Fire Station
Kula Community Center
Residents in impacted areas are not able to treat the water in any way to make it safe to consume, with contaminants such as benzene and other volatile organic chemicals entering the water system. Residents are further advised to: limit their use of hot water, reduce shower times while using lukewarm water in a ventilated area, not take baths, use a dishwasher and the air dry setting, wash clothes in cold water, dry laundry outdoors, avoid hot tubs or swimming pools, and use proper ventilation when using water indoors.
SHELTERS, HOUSING, and FINANCIAL AID
Over 2,700 individuals are sheltered at 11 hotel locations around Maui, in coordination with the American Red Cross (ARC). Nearly 154,000 meals have been served to date by the Salvation Army and ARC at shelters throughout the disaster response. The current shelter locations include:
· Hyatt Regency Maui - 200 Nohea Kai Drive, Lahaina
· Royal Lahaina - 2780 Kekaa Drive, Lahaina
· Honua Kai Outrigger - 130 Kai Malina Parkway, Lahaina
· Outrigger Kaʻanapali Beach Resort - 2525 Ka‘anapali Parkway, Lahaina
· Aston Ka‘anapali Shores – 3445 Lower Honoapi‘ilani Road, Lahaina
· Fairmont Kea Lani – 4100 Wailea Alanui Drive, Wailea
· Westin Maui - 2365 Kaanapali Parkway, Lahaina
· Andaz Maui at Wailea Resort – 3550 Wailea Alanui Drive, Wailea
· Maui Beach Hotel – 170 West Ka‘ahumanu Ave., Kahului
· Maui Seaside Hotel - 100 W Kaahumanu Ave., Kahului
· Aston Maui Ka‘anapali Villas: 45 Kai Ala Drive, Lahaina
To qualify for shelter and financial assistance, you must first register with the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). This can be done at a joint Disaster Recovery Center that operates daily from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. at the University of Hawai‘i Maui College, 310 W. Ka‘ahumanu Ave., Pilina Building, Kahului. You can also call 800-621-3362, visit www.fema.gov/disaster/4724, or apply through the FEMA smartphone application.
To date, over 9,400 FEMA assistance registrations have been received, with nearly $12.25 million in federal housing and individual assistance provided.
ARC is additionally offering financial assistance for survivors of the Maui wildfires, including those in shelters. Many of the FEMA registrants mentioned above have been contacted via email, text, or phone regarding this assistance. If you have not been contacted, additional appointments will be made available, with scheduling details next week. For more information, call the American Red Cross at 1-800-733-2767.
The State Department of Human Services announced an additional 250 Air BnB units are available to displaced residents or families on Maui for 21-day stays. Go to Lahaina Gateway Center, Tuesday thru Friday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., to pre-register.
Landlords, management companies, and homeowners from across the state have offered to rent more than 900 houses, apartment units and rooms immediately to the thousands of Maui residents who lost their homes to the wildfires. For assistance call (808) 587-0469 weekdays from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. or email [email protected]
Home, Business, Physical, and Economic Injury disaster loans are available from the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) as a result of impacts from the Maui wildfires. For more information please visit sba.gov/hawaii-wildfires . Applicants may also call SBA’s Customer Service Center at (800) 659-2955 or email [email protected] for more information on SBA financial disaster assistance.
Hawai‘i Department of Commerce and Consumer Affairs will be temporarily waiving registration fees for businesses affected by the wildfires. The waiver is in effect through 12/31/2023, and applies to fees for obtaining certificates of good standing and copies of business registrations documents filed with the division.
Beginning tomorrow, 8/24, a new Maui Bus “West Maui Express” Route #29 will provide hourly service between Kapalua, the Queen Ka‘ahumanu Center, and Ka‘anapali beginning daily at 5:30 a.m. For the exact route schedule, please visit www.mauicounty.gov/bus or use the free Maui Bus app. The following Maui Bus routes are still suspended until further notice:
· Lahaina Islander #20
· Lahaina Villager #23
· Ka’anapali Islander #25
· West Maui Islander #28
The Maui County Department of Transportation also announced that all Maui Bus fares for the Maui Bus Fixed Route, ADA Paratransit, and Commuter Service have been suspended due to the ongoing emergency. All services will continue to remain free of charge until further notice.
Maui Economic Opportunity Human Services and Maui Bus ADA Paratransit buses resumed trips to, from, and within West Maui. Buses will not be traveling to restricted areas. The Human Services system provides rides for low-income and rural residents, kupuna, youth, persons with disabilities and those living outside the paratransit service area without charge to doctor’s appointments, dialysis, youth centers after school, employment and other destinations. Human Services buses run 6 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday to Saturday depending on destination and type of service. Paratransit buses run every day, including holidays, from 5:30 a.m. to 10 p.m., depending on the location, in conjunction with Maui Bus routes. Both services require riders to be registered and approved prior to making a reservation. Applications are found at https://www.meoinc.org; reservations can be made by calling (808) 877-7651.
A free Ka’anapali Circulator Shuttle is available for people who are staying at any of the American Red Cross hotel shelters in West Maui, including the Hyatt Regency Maui, Outrigger Ka’anapali Beach Resort, Royal Lahaina, Honua Kai and the Westin Maui in Ka’anapali. The circulator shuttle runs in a continuous loop and is available daily from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. It connects the shelters to various services located at the different hotels, including the Family Assistance Center, located at the Hyatt Regency Maui. The shuttle is being operated by Roberts Hawai‘i.
Hawai‘i Department of Transportation (HDOT) and Federal Highway Administration are making $3 million available for recovery of West Maui infrastructure and traffic management, with a portion of this to be invested in a 30,000-foot dust screen around Lahaina, according to HDOT.
Late-night, vehicular access into Lahaina is limited to West Maui residents, first responders, and West Maui employees from 10 p.m. to 6 a.m. Evening road blocks on Honoapi‘ilani Highway (Highway 30) are located at Ma‘alaea and Wahe‘e. All motorists may enter from 6 a.m. to 10 p.m. daily. The Maui Police Department will cite and tow vehicles parked at the Lahaina Bypass, where there are no-parking signs.
Uber is now working with the American Red Cross to provide rides (up to $40) to people in hotel shelters on Maui who do not have transportation options. To redeem the discount, riders must apply the promo code “MAUI23” in the Wallet section of their Uber app prior to requesting the ride, which is valid for UberX or UberXL.
FOOD, WATER, AND SUPPLY DISTRIBUTION / DONATIONS
· Lahaina Gateway, 325 Keawe St., Lahaina: 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday, Wednesday, Thursday. Mobile health vehicle present. Food and supplies will only be distributed to West Maui residents. Starting tomorrow, 8/24, volunteers will be requiring proof of residency.
· Queen Ka’ahumanu Center donation drop-off and pick-up site, parking lot fronting Ka’ahumanu Avenue and Kane Street: 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday, Wednesday, Thursday. Non-perishable food, water and disposable kitchen supplies wanted; no clothing donations.
FEED MY SHEEP MOBILE FOOD DISTRIBUTION SITES
· Kahului: 150 South Pu’unene Ave., 9:30 a.m. to noon Saturday
· Wailuku: Parking lot next to Living Way Church at the corner of Market and Mokuhau streets in Happy Valley, 10 to 11:30 a.m. Friday
In addition, the Maui Humane Society reports having distributed more than 17,000 lbs of pet food and supplies to pet owners affected by the wildfires. They continue to offer these goods, as well, at veterinary services, at several distribution sites island-wide. Please visit mauihumanesociety.org for the latest distribution locations.
MEDICAL and NUTRITIONAL SUPPORT
Kaiser Permanente first aid stations are available at Hyatt Regency Lahaina, Maui Suites, Promenade Lower Level. Pharmacy courier services available. Open Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., and Saturday, 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Closed Sundays.
A Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) replacement benefit is available for recipients who experienced loss of food as a result of the recent wildfires. To apply for SNAP replacement benefits, please visit the Processing Center in your area or call the Public Assistance Information Line at 1-855-643-1643.
The Emergency Prescription Assistance Program (EPAP) helps uninsured people after disasters to be sure they still have the medicines and medical equipment they normally use to stay healthy. To enroll, call 1-855-793-7470 or visit https://aspr.hhs.gov/epap for more information from the U.S. Dept. of Health and Human Services.
The Hawai‘i Department of Health launched a call center to connect impacted residents with non-emergency medical services, mental health support, and other services. Survivors can call (808) 586-4468, Monday through Friday from 7:45 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
Hawaii CARES 988 is a 24/7 support service for help with crisis, mental health, and substance abuse. If you, a family member (including keiki), or someone you know needs confidential assistance with a trained crisis counselor, please call/text 988(TTY 711) or visit the National Suicide and Crisis Lifeline’s chat.
FAMILY ASSISTANCE CENTER
For those seeking information regarding loved ones or those who are unaccounted for, the Family Assistance Center (FAC) is located at the Hyatt Regency’s Monarchy Ballroom, 200 Nohea Kai Drive in Lahaina. It is open daily from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Agencies and organizations currently available at the FAC include:
§ FEMA Disaster Assistance
§ US Small Business Administration
§ American Red Cross
§ Salvation Army
§ Maui County Department of Housing and Human Concerns
§ Maui Economic Opportunity—Emergency Financial Assistance
§ Tzu Chi Foundation—Emergency Financial Assistance
§ Maui County Bar Association—Legal Information
§ United Way of Maui
§ Health, Mental Health, and Spiritual Care services
If you are unable to locate or connect with a loved one who has been impacted by a recent disaster, and cannot visit the FAC, please call 1-800-733-2767 and select Option 4 to follow the voice prompts for "Hawaii Wildfires." Provide as much detail as possible to assist in potentially locating your missing loved one. Call volume is high and callers may experience longer wait times.
If you live on a neighbor island or the continental U.S., are the immediate family member of a person missing as the result of the Maui wildfires, and you wish to provide a DNA sample to assist, please call the Federal Bureau of Investigation Honolulu Division at (808) 566-4300.
DNA samples are only for identification of wildfire victims and survivors, and will not be stored or used for any other purpose. In some cases, this information may be the best way to determine identification with regards to the destructive nature of the wildfires.
The Family Assistance Center has received reports about Maui community members receiving calls from individuals or organizations claiming to be with “DNA Services.” These telephone calls are scams, and anyone receiving them should hang up immediately and report them to the Maui Police Department’s non-emergency number at (808) 244-6400.
POWER and COMMUNICATIONS
Hawaiian Electric Co. energized a second mobile substation in Lahaina area as crews work to restore a majority of serviceable West Maui customers by this weekend and continue to safely rebuild sections of Maui’s electric grid. About 1,800 West Maui customers and approximately 50 Upcountry customers remain without power.
When attempting to connect with loved ones in areas of low cell phone or internet connectivity, it is best to text not call. Though there is coverage in these areas, the capacity is still building, which can result in dropped calls. Maui County updates will continue to be aired daily at noon on local radio stations.
ENTRY INTO DISASTER AREAS
Currently, the disaster area is restricted to authorized personnel only. At this time, media and residents are not allowed in the disaster area as significant hazards exist. For those accessing areas outside of the disaster area, the county urges individuals to continue to avoid all burn areas and do not enter any areas where structures were burned until you receive a clearance from authorities.
Dangers include ash that may contain toxic, cancer-causing chemicals including asbestos, arsenic, and lead with debris including broken glass, exposed electrical wires, nails, wood, plastics, and other objects. Unstable buildings and structures may contain hazardous materials and could collapse causing injury. For those who can return to their properties, county officials urge all individuals to utilize Personal Protective Equipment (PPE). For more recommendations regarding PPE, go to bit.ly/WestMauiCaution
Recovery and other emergency response operators have been instructed to report any stray animal sightings to the Maui County Emergency Operations Center. The information will then be provided to the Maui Humane Society so they can safely retrieve, rehabilitate, and support the reported animals. This protocol has already resulted in the rescue and treatment of animals in the disaster area.
King Kekaulike High School reopened for freshman today, 8/23, with sophomores, juniors and seniors returning Thursday, 8/24. Four public schools in Lahaina were impacted by the wildfires and closed the morning of 8/8: King Kamehameha III Elementary, Princess Nahi‘ena‘ena Elementary, Lahaina Intermediate, and Lahainaluna High. The Kamehameha III campus was damaged to the point of disrepair, while the other three sustained wind damage. For State Department of Education information and resources to assist those impacted by the wildfires, please visit: bit.ly/HIDOE-West-Maui-Resources.
RESOURCE HUB: Donation & Volunteer Information
An online, centralized hub to respond to the impacts of the Maui Wildfire Disaster is available at mauinuistrong.info. The County of Maui’s “Maui Nui Strong” site offers information on how to donate, volunteer, offer services, and locate support. It is administered through the County’s Office of Economic Development, and will be utilized to connect people to resources and services. For any additional questions, or to talk to a county representative regarding the Maui Wildfire Disaster, please call (808) 270-7285.
If you would like to directly receive Maui County press releases, and other official notifications, directly to your email inbox, please visit mauicounty.gov/list.aspx.
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