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Maui brushfire closes Honoapiilani Highway near Maalaea

By Star-Advertiser Staff

LAST UPDATED: 2:40 p.m. HST, Jun 8, 2010


A brush fire on the slopes of West Maui mountains forced Maui fire officials to close sections of Honoapiilani Highway near Maalaea at noon today.

The Red Cross also set up shelters at the Lahaina Civic Center and the Maui War Memorial Gym this afternoon to assist residents affected or prevented from returning home because of the brushfire.

Maui firefighters renewed their efforts this morning to battle a brush fire about a quarter-mile mauka of Honoapiilani Highway in the Maalaea area. 

Fire crews were aided by four helicopters at daylight to reach the fire which Maui officials say has burned 200 acres in an inaccessible area.

No injuries have been reported, and no structures are reported to be in danger.

Maui Fire Chief Jeff Murray said the cause of the fire is still under investigation, but believes that high winds last night might have knocked down a power line causing the initial blaze.

Maui firefighters had been mopping up yesterday after another brushfire that started Sunday, also mauka of Honoapiilani Highway. That fire was reported at 6:32 a.m. Sunday and was 90 percent contained Sunday night.

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