Medical flights land on North Shore

LIHU‘E — Hawai‘i Life Flight and American Medical Response have placed into service a medical helicopter, now stationed at Lihu‘e Airport.

The helicopter is being used for all patient transports north of the Hanalei Bridge.

It was put into service Sunday to medevac a Wainiha resident from Waioli Park in Hanalei to Lihu‘e Airport, and then by ambulance to Wilcox Medical Center.

Staffed with one pilot and two medical staff, AMR and HLF craft has 24-hour emergency response services.

The Federal Aviation Administration has issued a temporary flight restriction for the airspace from Princeville to Ke‘e Beach, restricting all aircraft including drones.

A flash-flood watch remains in effect for Kaua‘i through 6 p.m. today. A high-surf advisory remains in effect for all north-, east- and west-facing shores of Kaua‘i and Ni‘ihau through 6 p.m. today. Strong breaking waves, shore break and strong longshore and rip currents are expected.

All weather and ocean advisories may be extended, dropped or modified as conditions develop.

A new webpage has been created on the County of Kaua‘i website, providing ongoing information and resources for those affected by the March 2021 flood, kauai.gov/kema “March 2021 Flooding.”

Up-to-date information is posted on Kuhio Highway closures and repairs, damage assessments, refuse services, postal services, power and water utility services, COVID-19 vaccines and other health-related resources.

The county is also conducting assessments of storm-affected areas across the island. If your home suffered damages due to the March flooding, visit kauai.gov/kema and click on the green link “March 2021 Rain Damage/Flood Reporting” to complete a form.

Information provided will help to gather necessary data which may be used to determine whether or not certain federal aid is made available to residents of Kaua‘i and Hawai‘i.

For assistance on how to fill out the form, call KEMA at 241-1800.

Both lanes of Kuhio Highway, at the Hanalei Hill approaching Hanalei Bridge, remain closed as officials continue to assess the damage, conduct debris removal and stabilize the slopes.

As of Sunday, the slope had been stabilized enough that work to clear the road of landslide materials from the larger landslide on March 11 could begin.

State Department of Transportation officials are still targeting Tuesday to establish single-lane emergency access through the area, weather permitting. DOT crews coordinated with a contractor to remove more loose soil and material from the slope Sunday.

On Saturday, while removing loose materials from slope above the road, DOT’s contractor found a large mass of unstable material. A newly-discovered fissure, approximately 80 feet long and 12 feet deep, was observed on the upper portion of the slope. The loose soils and vegetation in this area cannot be stabilized in place and must be brought down before contractors can work on clearing the road and reestablishing access.

To expedite roadway clearing and minimize the potential for heavy vehicle vibration to impact the upper slopes, landslide materials will be stored on the property on the Hanalei side of the road until the slopes have been stabilized and secured, according to HDOT.

Other road closures:

• Kuhio Highway, between Kolopua Apartments and Hanalei Plantation Road, remains closed out of an abundance of caution. DOT officials have installed systems to monitor any movement in the road.

• One lane of Kuhio Highway at mile marker 4.5 near Waikoko is currently open to alternating traffic.

Follow The Garden Island for more information as it becomes available.

2 Comments
  1. randy kansas March 15, 2021 6:23 am Reply

    thank goodness we have plenty of fossil fuels for these efforts…..


  2. Kauaidoug March 15, 2021 10:22 am Reply

    Seems to me with all the work done on that specific area someone should have known there were fissures capable of sliding. Do fissures of this magnitude happen overnight? Who’s in charge and my heart goes out to those poor folks on North Shore.


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