Hawaii officials say there is no threat to tourists at Hawaii island flourishes
Hawaii officials have confirmed there is not a threat to the islands’ tourist attractions or visitors after they were flooded by Tropical Storm Hermine.
Brian Schweitzer and Hawaii’s top official for emergency management, Dr. Jonathan Kim, said the state has a number of preparedness measures in place and the Department of Land and Natural Resources is working to ensure the island’s tourism businesses are able to reopen, but it is not clear if any visitors or businesses will be impacted.
“As of now, the governor and I have no information to indicate there is a threat of harm to visitors,” Schweitzer said Friday.
Kim said he has asked the state’s Office of Emergency Management to conduct an extensive survey of the islands, including the shoreline, shoreline vegetation and water quality, to determine if there are any problems.
The department is also seeking the public’s help to determine the extent of the damage to the island and the damage caused by the storm.
The storm caused a total of $9 billion in property damage and was estimated to cost $4.5 billion to restore, according to a news release from the governor’s office.
The island has been evacuated for nearly two weeks.
The National Weather Service issued a tornado warning for Maui County, which includes Honolulu, for more than an hour Friday morning.
The governor and Schweitzer both said the damage was caused by strong winds and flooding.
“There are a number impacts that we haven’t seen before that are affecting the people of Hawaii, the tourists and people who have come to this state,” Schweizer said.
The Department of Environmental Management issued a severe weather warning for parts of the state and issued a red flag for the Maui Channel area.
“The state is prepared to take whatever steps necessary to restore this beautiful Hawaiian Island to its pre-storm condition,” Kim said.
A number of other counties in Hawaii have also issued a state of emergency as a result of the storm, including Oahu and Honolulu.
More information about Tropical Storm Shemine is available at www.hermine.gov and at https://twitter.com/hermine