By Wendy Osher
Another unscheduled cane burn was reported on Maui, this time causing an estimated $100,000 in damage and burning an estimated 26 acres in Kūʻau, officials said.
Fire officials say the incident was reported at 12:45 p.m. on Sunday, June 16, 2013 at the intersection of Holomua Road and the Hāna Highway in a Hawaiian Commercial and Sugar Company sugarcane field.
Crews responding to the scene included the Maui Department of Fire and Public Safety’s Air-1 helicopter, as well as personnel from the Kahului, Pāʻia, and Makawao stations, authorities said.
The cause of the fire was undetermined, according to Maui Fire Services Chief Lee Mainaga.
He said units arrived on scene at 12:49 p.m., had the fire under control at 2 p.m., and extinguished at 3:15 p.m.
The fire forced the closure of the Hāna Highway between Holomua Road and Kaimao Street for about an hour due to heavy smoke conditions.
The unscheduled cane burn comes on the heels of three suspicious cane fires reported overnight on Thursday, June 13, into Friday morning, June 14, 2013. Authorities say those particular fires, which were reported over a one hour, 15 minute time-span, appeared to have been intentionally set.
***Video Courtesy: Dennis Lowery.