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Wilson Tunnel fixes to be done by Nov. 9

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Repairs to the aging Wilson Tunnel ceiling will likely take three fewer weeks than originally projected, state transportation officials say.

The state Department of Transportation officials announced last week that they anticipated the repairs would take two months to finish, after inspectors had discovered 30 broken stainless-steel rods used to help support a stretch of the tunnel ceiling. Now, after having consulted with its contractors, the DOT says it should take closer to five weeks total, according to a department news release.

It will still take two to three weeks for the parts and materials to arrive on Oahu, and then the repairs will begin, the release stated. Once work starts, the tunnel will be fully closed in the town-bound direction from 9 p.m. to 4 a.m., according to the DOT. One town-bound lane in the tunnel is now closed.

The department says it now anticipates opening both town-bound lanes by Nov. 9.

Humpback whales spotted off Niihau, Kauai

Two humpback whales have arrived early to the Hawaiian Islands this season, which generally runs November through May, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration said Tuesday.

Researchers on the NOAA ship Hi‘ialakai, heading home from the Northwestern Hawaiian Islands, spotted the first humpback whale of the season off Niihau on Sept. 29.

The second was spotted a few days later off Kauai’s southwest coast near the Pacific Missile Range Facility by Sterling Silva of Captain Andy’s Sailing Adventures.

Ed Lyman, marine mammal response manager for the Hawaiian Islands Humpback Whale National Marine Sanctuary, said it’s hard to know whether these whales may have stayed behind, but it could have happened.

However, “we’re in the ballpark,” he said. “This in the general time frame.”

Whales have come to Hawaii from Alaska as early as Aug. 30.

Second man charged in Kona car theft

Hawaii County police Tuesday charged a second Captain Cook man in connection with a Sept. 27 car theft from a Kailua-Kona home.

Police said a 2004 Audi sedan and other items were stolen from a locked garage at a home on the 73-4300 block of Halemau Street.

Police arrested Dyllan Paulo-Leslie, 20, Monday on suspicion of unauthorized control of a propelled vehicle.

Detectives charged him Tuesday with two counts of forgery, five counts of theft and one count each of burglary, unauthorized control of a propelled vehicle, unauthorized possession of personal confidential information, theft/forgery of a credit card and fraudulent use of a credit card. Bail was set at $23,500, and he is scheduled to appear in court today.

Last week police charged Kolton Bannister of Captain Cook in the case with two counts of theft and one count each of unauthorized control of a propelled vehicle, burglary and unauthorized possession of personal confidential information.

Transformer repairs to close Kauai memorial

The Kauai War Memorial Convention Hall will be closed Oct. 19-22 when Kauai Island Utility Cooperative personnel will be replacing a transformer.

Parks and Recreation Director Lenny Rapozo said, “This will result in a big improvement to the delivery of electrical services at the convention hall.”

For information contact Eddie Sarita, conventional hall manager, at 241-6623 or via email at

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