Hawaii’s Attorney General’s Office Report on Maui’s Deadly Fire

The Hawaii Attorney General’s Office has released a report on the wildfires that hit Maui in August of last year. It found the head of the Maui Emergency Management Agency hesitated to return to the island as the crisis unfolded.

Herman Andaya was at a conference in Oahu. He received updates from his staff but he stayed off the island. After the fire burned for five hours, Andaya decided he’d better “come home tomorrow.”

Andaya has since resigned and did so via telephone and social media.

The report also said there was a huge breakdown in communications that left the island’s authorities confused about what was happening and it left residents of Maui without emergency alerts.

The report also noted there were communications issues with the Hawaiian Electric Company. Its emergency workers were unable to confirm that power lines were shut down until a long time after the fires had caused damage all over the island.

The fires killed 101 people.

Attorney General Anne Lopez presented the report along with Steve Kerber who is the vice president of the Fire Safety Research Institute.

“When Attorney General Lopez contacted us, clearly we were paying a lot of attention to what was going on in Lahaina and really had the same question that she had. How is it possible that something like this could happen?” Kerber said.

Neither Kerber nor Lopez would talk about the cause of the fires or who is liable. Nothing will be decided until two more reports are completed. One of them is being done by the federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives. The Maui Fire Department requested that report.

Also of note, investigators are having trouble getting information and details from the Maui Emergency Management Agency,

Source link: Associated Press — https://bit.ly/4b5PJdF

Source link: Insurance Journal — https://bit.ly/3UvmZFG

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