Emergency personnel are fighting a bush fire in the West Maui area (Hawaii state) as of 18:00 (local time) on Tuesday, October 22. Officials have closed Kapalua Airport (JHM) and suspended flight operations after the fire damaged nearby power lines and reached the airport’s runway. Multiple roads have also been closed including Olali Street, Mahinahina Street, Akahele Street, Ala Hoku Place, Kaka`analeo Drive, Honoapiilani Highway at Lower Honoapiilani Highway, and Ho`ohui Road at Honoapiilani Highway. Local officials have warned that the Maui Bus fix route is still operating but is delayed by approximately 30 minutes. Residents in the Kahana Ridge and Ala Hoku subdivisions have been evacuated as a precaution.
As of 17:00 on Tuesday, the fire has burned an estimated 964 acres (390 hectares). Around 40 fire personnel have deployed to contain the blaze and protect utility poles in the area. Transportation disruptions are expected to continue into Wednesday, October 23. Further flight cancelations and delays are possible, as well as additional road closures. Up-to-date information can be found on the Maui county website here.
Individuals in the affected areas are advised to monitor developments to the situation, adhere to instructions issued by local authorities (e.g. evacuation notices, road closures), and exercise caution when traveling near the wildfire. Children and those with respiratory illness are advised to limit outdoor activity.
Travelers flying via JHM are advised to confirm flight reservations prior to leaving for the airport and to contact their airline for additional information.
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