The Maui Wildfires: an update

The August 8th fires and what we can do now to support the recovering island.
The Maui Wildfires: an update

The devastation of the Maui wildfires has completely flipped the world of its citizens upside down. Starting on August 8th, the wildfires led to at least 97 fatalities and thousands of homes completely unrecognizable which left 6,800 individuals residing in hotels and Airbnb’s. 

Although the fires were put out on August 11th, the effects of the tragedy still linger. The Island is facing unclean water problems in sections of Lahaina and Kuba. 

The Maui department of water supply reports high levels of toxins left behind due to the heavy ash fall and damaged water pipes. The state health department found 23 different bacteria making the water too dangerous for families to treat on their own through boiling or safety straws. This high contamination has forced the people into  two months of drinking from various jugs and plastic water bottles. However, starting Oct.10th the island will finally have clean water returned for consumption.

As the island begins its recovery, the people follow. 

Since the Aug.8th fires students have stayed indoors due to air contamination but as of Oct 18th students Lahaina’s two elementary schools were reopened in a shared campus. The fires left King Kamehameha Elementary III campus severely damaged but as the air monitors show that ash is no longer reaching the school, the children are finally safe to return. By sharing the Nahienaena Elementary campus they are able to create a sense of normality for the children and their families again. 

However there is concern about the toxins still left in the soil, “the concentrations are indeed high, which only reinforces the need for cautionary measures” said health director Kenneth Fink to the Maui News. High levels of cobalt and arsenic left from ash was found to be 20 times above the environmental action level. Citizens are advised to daily mopping and wiping down all surfaces in their homes and told to keep children away from any outdoor playing areas that contain ash. 

Though the island is moving in a more positive direction and working towards recovery, it’s important to keep these individuals in our minds as the rest of the world moves forward around us. If you’re looking to support those who have been victimized by the fires, please donate to GoFundMe(Theresa Cook, Angelita Vasquez, Penny & Clyde Wakida ) or charity social media accounts in order to provide proper barrials, clothing, housing etc.

Leave a Comment
More to Discover

Comments (0)

All The Voyager Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *