Flood waters strand boat

WAILUA — When Wayne Ng of Wailua Homesteads got up Friday morning, he was almost stunned at what greeted him at the Wailua Marina.

“This is pretty bad,” said Ng, who moved here three months ago. “I know we had thunder and lightning, but I didn’t think the rains were as strong where we were.”

Debris accumulated from the Wailua River flood waters clogged a large area of the marina, choking off the boat launch area, and walkways. The Wade K, a 32-ton barge from Smith’s Boats, sat aground, a pair of concrete tie-downs piercing its bottom.

“This is just going to have to wait,” said Mokihana Smith. “This is Good Friday and a lot of the people aren’t working today. We had people in here cleaning up some of the rubbish on the walkways, but we don’t have that many people working because of the holiday.”

She said they also took a crew and some of the state’s Department of Land and Natural Resources people to assess damage to the Upper Pier near the Fern Grotto.

“There wasn’t that much damage up there,” said Kamika Smith. “Our people cleaned up as best as they could, and we should be able to resume tours by midday, Friday. It all depends on the river.”

Kamika said the Wade K ran aground after apparently breaking one of its mooring lines.

“The water was pretty high,” he said. “When the river mouth broke open, the water descended pretty quickly, leaving the boat up on the pier.”

Freckles Smith said after evaluating the Smith’s Tropical Luau gardens, damage was limited to the pasture area where several of the resident goats perished from the high water.

“The ones that were high on the stones were alright,” Freckles said. “But we lost several of the young ones.”

Kelly Corbett of Kayak Kauai said he came down to check his boats after receiving a photo of the area.

“This is the most damage I’ve seen in six years with Kayak Kauai,” Corbett said. “We’ve been here at the marina for just three years, and the debris is clogged up to the bathrooms.”

Mokihana Smith also said the amount of water, the height it reached, and the amount of debris was the most she’s witnessed in a long time.

“There was a guy from the Kamokila Hawaiian Village down here earlier this morning looking for his canoe,” Mokihana said. “It’s not here. Maybe it got swept out to Lydgate Park.”

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