Waiehu Home Fire Update: $400,000 in Damage Reported
By Wendy Osher
A home fire in Waiehu on Sunday has prompted officials from the Maui Fire Department to issue a reminder about the importance of smoke detectors.
Rick Liserr, an 84-year-old resident of the home that caught fire, was asleep when the blaze broke out. The MFD credited a smoke detector with awakening the man and allowing him to escape without injury.
The fire at 1356 Hiahia Street (originally reported as 203 Lower Waiehu Beach Road because of the house number on the residence) caused an estimated $400,000 in damage.
The fire was reported at 12:27 p.m. and was extinguished at 3:05 p.m.
“Everyone is very happy that Mr. Liserr made it out of his home OK,” said Maui Fire Chief Jeff Murray. In light of the incident, the Chief issued a reminder to residents to make sure smoke detectors are working properly, and know what to do if one is activated.
The department recommends checking smoke detectors at least once a month, and change batteries at least once a year.
“Absolutely,” agreed Liserr’s son Tony, who also lives in another house on the same property. “Probably the flames wouldn’t have gotten him but the smoke was so bad . . . it was enough to knock you down,” he said.
The cause of the fire is believed to be accidental, and likely caused by an electrical short in the garage, however the official cause of the blaze remains under investigation.