comscore Navy secretary’s plan to visit Oahu raises hopes for Red Hill drinking water solution
Top News

Navy secretary’s plan to visit Oahu raises hopes for Red Hill drinking water solution

Honolulu Star-Advertiser logo
Unlimited access to premium stories for as low as $12.95 /mo.
Get It Now

Navy Secretary Carlos Del Toro is expected in Honolulu for the 80th commemoration of the Dec. 7, 1941 attack on Pearl Harbor, raising optimism among some county and state leaders today that contaminated water suspected of originating from the Navy’s Red Hill fuel storage facility will become a bigger issue for the Navy.

“It is at a crisis level,” state Rep. Aaron Johanson told the Honolulu Star-Advertiser following a news conference of six state legislators and councilwomen who represent various communities in and around Red Hill, where families are reporting illnesses and foul tasting and smelling tap water.

“Everyone is beyond frustrated,” Johanson said. “It’s not like this is out of nowhere and unforeseen.”

Concerns over the possibility of leaks at Red Hill have been around for years and exacerbated by a 2014 leak that has not produced satisfactory answers, let alone solutions, seven years later, Johanson said.

For the Navy, Johanson said the situation has created “a crisis of confidence and credibility in the U.S. military.”

At the news conference, held outside of the “Red Hill mauka” gate leading to military housing, state Sen. Glenn Wakai said town hall meetings over contaminated drinking water have only resulted “in more questions than answers.”

An electronic billboard in front of the guard shack read: “Water Issue.”

Wakai said that short-term ideas are under consideration, including the possibility of letting families shower at Aiea, Moanalua and Radford High schools, which would require approval from the state Department of Education; and the possibility of letting families stay in Oahu hotels, which would need approval and coordination with the Hawaii Lodging & Tourism Association and Hawaii Tourism Authority.

Comments (4)

By participating in online discussions you acknowledge that you have agreed to the Terms of Service. An insightful discussion of ideas and viewpoints is encouraged, but comments must be civil and in good taste, with no personal attacks. If your comments are inappropriate, you may be banned from posting. Report comments if you believe they do not follow our guidelines.

Having trouble with comments? Learn more here.

Click here to see our full coverage of the coronavirus outbreak. Submit your coronavirus news tip.

Be the first to know
Get web push notifications from Star-Advertiser when the next breaking story happens — it's FREE! You just need a supported web browser.
Subscribe for this feature

Scroll Up