Maui Landfill Reopens, Fire Contained
By Wendy Osher
A compost fire that has been burning since Sunday afternoon was 95% contained by Monday night, officials said.
Damages to equipment from Maui EKO Systems and Pacific Biodiesel is reported at upwards of $360,000.
Crews from Maui EKO Systems reported the loss of a grinder and two tractor trailers valued at between $300,000 and $500,000, said Maui Fire Services Chief Lee Mainaga. Pacific Biodeisel also lost two trailers and two tanks valued at $60,000, he said.
Due to the extensive fire and smoke conditions, fire officials say crews were not able to assess the full extent of the damage.
Fire officials say the compost pile at the Central Maui Landfill is about two acres in size, and about 30 feet high.
Crews from Public Works and Environmental Management were released from the scene yesterday, while firefighters continued to monitor the area overnight, said FS Chief Mainaga.
Maui County Communications Director Rod Antone tells Maui Now that the landfill is open today.
County officials issued a press release this morning saying both the Central Maui Landfill and Olowalu Recycling & Refuse Convenience Center were reopened today.
The Olowalu facility was closed on Sunday, after the landfill closure reportedly caused the convenience center to fill to capacity.
This will allow county work crews to resume picking up residential trash routes in affected areas today.
County officials say delays are expected, and any missed routes today will be picked up on Wednesday.
“The landfill was closed for health and safety reasons, and I would like to personally thank all of the landfill personnel, county and state fire fighters and Public Works crews who have been working for more than 24 hours in thick smoke to get this fire under control,” said Mayor Arakawa in a statement.
“Things could have been a lot worse, which is why we are looking at ways to reduce the amount of material in our landfill,” he said.