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Waikiki, Ala Moana beaches reopened after sewage spill

    Waikiki Beach was deserted Monday afternoon after more than half a million gallons of sewage mixed with storm runoff spilled into the ocean.

Following a massive spill that dumped sewage into the ocean at Ala Moana Beach Park on Monday morning, a city officials said Wednesday afternoon that Waikiki and Ala Moana beaches and shoreline waters are now reopened. 

Water tests conducted on Monday and Tuesday showed the ocean off Ala Moana Beach Park and shoreline waters of Waikiki apparently were not impacted by the spill, according to city and state Department of Health officials. 

However, test results show that the Ala Wai Small Boat Harbor, Kewalo Basin Small Boat Harbor, the canoe launch area adjacent to Ala Wai Small Boat Harbor, the pond and canal along Ala Moana Boulevard, and the western end of Kakaako Park were impacted by the spill. 

The public is advised to avoid these waters until warning signs are removed. Surfers and boat users are advised that offshore waters may still be impacted, particularly near harbor entrances. 

In addition, a statewide brown water advisory, due to the recent rain, is still in effect. Officials advise if the water is brown, stay out. 

City officials said Tuesday that a key pump station that should have been up and running during heavy rains on Monday morning was inoperable because the contractor in a major construction project at the Keawe Street pump station left the facility offline. 

Without the station operational, the sewer system was overwhelmed during heavy rain. The back-flow ended up escaping through manholes at the intersection of Atkinson Drive and Ala Moana Boulevard, entering the ocean through storm drains. 

After initially estimating that the spill that dumped more than 500,000 gallons of sewage into the ocean, on Wednesday officials lowered the estimate to 129,000 gallons. 

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