Big Isle mayor’s home destroyed by lava, county confirms
August 14, 2018 | 80° | Check Traffic

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Big Isle mayor’s home destroyed by lava, county confirms

  • CINDY ELLEN RUSSELL / CRUSSELL@STARADVERTISER.COM

    Hawaii County Mayor Harry Kim spoke on the phone as Assistant Housing Administrator Duane Hosaka kept nearby at a community meeting today in Pahoa.

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Final confirmation came early this evening that Mayor Harry Kim’s Vacationland home has been destroyed, according to Hawaii island managing director Wil Okabe.

Kim told the Honolulu Star-Advertiser that after receiving word this morning the home was gone, he got final confirmation about 5 p.m. that the property he purchased in 1971 was destroyed by lava flow.

Earlier in the day, Janet Snyder, spokeswoman of the Hawaii County Civil Defense, had reported that an aerial flyover showed Kim’s home was still standing, but Okabe said that information was incorrect.

Kim’s property in Vacationland is his second. He also has a home in Hilo.

The latest official count of homes destroyed by lava is 117, however, Snyder said they know the figure is much higher. Property maps will be reviewed to determine the total number of homes destroyed thus far.

“Vacationland is almost totally destroyed,” Snyder said.

Fissure 8 in the Kilauea lower East Rift Zone remains active that has produced a flow filling Kapoho Bay. A large laze plume is billowing into in the air along the coastline

Due to the eruption activity, Government Beach Road between Kahakai Boulevard and Cinder Road is only open to Waa Waa and Papaya Farms Road residents with official credentials. There is no curfew.

A total of 401 displaced residents sought shelter at the Pahoa Community Shelter and the Keaau Armory, the latter of which is now at capacity.

Kim was in attendance at a 5 p.m. community meeting at Pahoa High School.

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