Off-road Vehicle Damages Silverswords and Trail at Haleakalā Summit
On the morning of Saturday, Sept. 28, 2019, Haleakalā National Park law enforcement rangers observed tire tracks leaving the paved road at Haleakalā’s summit.
An investigation into the incident revealed that a single vehicle had driven off the road, killing several Haleakalā Silverswords (Argyroxiphium sandwicense subsp. macrocephalum), a Federally listed Threatened plant that grows nowhere else in the world.
Park officials say the vehicle also destroyed part of the historic Keoneheʻeheʻe trail, built by the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) in 1934. The National Park Service believes this incident took place late Friday night or very early Saturday morning (Sept. 27-28, 2019).
“Those responsible not only killed a federally protected species and damaged a historic resource, but also impacted the scenery at the summit for years to come,” said Park Chief Ranger Ari Wong. “Those tire tracks in the cinder will take years to disappear,” Wong said.
The National Park Service is asking for the public’s help in identifying anyone responsible for the damage. Anyone with information is asked to call Haleakalā National Park Law Enforcement at (808) 985-6170, or the National Park Service tip line at (888) 653-0009. Callers can remain anonymous.