Fire remains active, air support increased, road still open, structure spared

May 4, 2010, 11:43 AM HST · Updated May 4, 6:35 PM
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(Updated @ 11:46 a.m. by Wendy Osher)

The Honoapiilani Highway is now open in both directions.  The road was reopened shortly before 10 a.m. after being closed overnight because of an encroaching brush fire.  Fire crews were able to establish a fire break this morning, allowing motorists to utilize the Honoapiilani Highway, which serves as the main link between Central and West Maui.

The Honoapiilani Highway was reopened at 9:55 a.m. on Tuesday after being closed overnight. A 1,100-acre brush fire advanced near the Highway. An unoccupied home under construction was spared any major damages. Photo courtesy MPD Lahaina Patrol Commander, Charles Hirata.

Fire crews continued to cut fire breaks and douse hot spots along the Honoapiilani Highway Tuesday morning. The blaze forced an eight-and-a-half hour road closure from 1:30 a.m. to 9:55 a.m. Photo courtesy MPD Lahaina Patrol Commander, Charles Hirata.

No injuries were reported.  The structure that was reported damaged this morning did not sustain any significant damage as previously thought.  County officials say the flames came close to the structure, which was unoccupied and under construction, but it was spared any significant damage.

At last report the fire remained active and was not yet contained.  The blaze had scorched 1,100 acres, beginning in the Ukumehame area on Monday afternoon and had advanced toward Olowalu overnight.

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Today, there are 5 helicopters on scene assisting with water drops.  A total of 25 firefighters are joined today by 15 members of the Department of Forestry ad Wildlife’s wild land fire crew.

There are six water tankers and 5 bulldozers on scene, creating firebreaks alongside the Honoapiilani Highway and in areas surrounding the Olowalu residential area.

County officials say the Department of Transportation is working to restore bus service to the affected areas.

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