Red Cross volunteers struggle to reach shelter

HANALEI — When the Hanalei Bridge closed early Friday due to severe flash flood warnings, the Kauai County American Red Cross Chapter shelter was ready. It just needed volunteers.

So Kauai County Red Cross Director Padraic Gallagher drove 31 miles from Lihue around midnight and opened the shelter at Hanalei Elementary School.

“It’s kind of tough to get people in that area,” Gallagher said Friday.

The bridge reopened in the morning.

Gallagher was the only Red Cross staff member at the shelter.

Although Gallagher said no one stayed at the shelter overnight, more than a dozen stopped by.

The Kauai chapter has been recruiting volunteers but Gallagher said the North Shore is where help is most needed.

“This shelter is unique because of the one lane bridge and because we have so many visitors in that area,” Gallagher said.

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