Trouble in Paradise - Hawaii Wildfires

Started by majorhavoc, August 10, 2023, 01:15:02 PM

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majorhavoc

A post-apocalyptic tale of love, loss and redemption. And zombies!
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Optimist

Are the fires over and they are having communication and other problems in the aftermath or are the fires still ongoing?

majorhavoc

Latest I heard is the fires are mostly still not contained, and at least one villiage have been almost completely destroyed. People were jumping into the Pacific to escape the flames at one point. US military personnel on site to assist with search and recovery operations. Thousands have been evacuated to public emergency shelters or are camped out in airport lounges awaiting flights out. State officials are rapidly running out of emergency resources.

Reports of widespread power and communication outages. Death toll expected to increase.

In other news, I received an email today from the Fodors Travel Newsletter announcing a contest to win a Free Trip for 2 to beautiful, tranquil Kauai! I'm filing that one under "Unfortunate timing/Questionable optics".

Elsewhere, I'm fighting my usual lonely battle on Slickdeals.net, this time in defense of a deal on the Surviorware 72-hr Emergency Kit. People are posting nonsense like "you'd have to have a pretty vivid imagination to think of a scenario where you'd need this."  I guess no one ever accused that guy of being up on current events.
A post-apocalyptic tale of love, loss and redemption. And zombies!
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Optimist

Oh man, that's terrible. Fires are one of the scarier disasters.

flybynight

Death toll up to 36 and expected to rise.  Thousands  being treated at hospitals for burns and smoke inhalation. Visitors being asked to leave the island 


https://youtu.be/bSP-QnjcIZ0
"Hey idiot, you should feel your pulse, not see it."  Echo 83

Uomo Senza Nome

Kaua'i, known as the Garden Island, is absolutely beautiful. I spent a month there back in 2012. They have literally a hundred miles of beautiful unspoiled beaches without a soul on them. You can walk for hours enjoying it in solitude or with a special person. There is greenery everywhere. This is heartbreaking.

"It's what people know about themselves inside that makes 'em afraid. "

"There's plain few problems can't be solved with a little sweat and hard work."

Uomo Senza Nome

https://apnews.com/article/hawaii-fires-maui-lahaina-sirens-c0f3cc5c7718bd41dd54d38479fb29b2

Death toll is now 55. This will likely surpass the 1960 Tsunami as the worst natural disaster to strike the islands in modern times.


QuoteBut many survivors said in interviews Thursday that they didn't hear any sirens or receive a warning that gave them enough time to prepare and only realized they were in danger when they saw flames or heard explosions nearby.

QuotePower and cellphone service had both gone out earlier Tuesday, leaving the town with no real-time information about the danger.

Quote"Without a doubt, it feels like a bomb was dropped on Lahaina," the governor said after walking the ruins of the town Thursday morning with the mayor.
The town has been completely reduced to ash and rubble.
"It's what people know about themselves inside that makes 'em afraid. "

"There's plain few problems can't be solved with a little sweat and hard work."

Lambykins

This is horrible.
Such a beautiful place and now...just ashes.
"But what I do have are a very particular set of skills, skills I have acquired over a very long career, skills that make me a nightmare for people like you." Taken

"There is no such thing as a fair fight. Fight dirty EVERY time. Dirty fighters win, fair fighters lose. Every fight is a fight for your life. Fight to win. Fight dirty." My dad

"Am I dangerous? Ask any of my surviving exes..." Me

majorhavoc

Questions are mounting about whether Hawaiian emergency officials acted with enough urgency in response to these wildfires.  Residents of the devastated town of Lahaina in particular are reporting that an evacuation order either never came or wasn't issued until flames had already reached residential neighborhoods.

We don't have a DICE section here at UFoZS and discuss these disasters out of some perverse fascination with the misfortunes of others. One of the purposes of DICE is to highlight the types of scenarios that could potentially occur in your AO, and glean learnings that can help us be better prepared.

One clear takeaway here is the importance of being situationally aware of local conditions and emerging threats. And to be ready, able and equipped to act decisively, regardless of what government agencies are - or are not - telling the public to do.

Even timely official evacuation orders may serve only to ensure you're bogged down in a mass exodus from a danger zone.

In all desperate situations, you want to be ahead of the crowd, not part of it.
A post-apocalyptic tale of love, loss and redemption. And zombies!
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Uomo Senza Nome

#9
QuoteOne of the purposes of DICE is to highlight the types of scenarios that could potentially occur in your AO, and glean learnings that can help us be better prepared.
Being on an island surrounded by a forest on fire doesn't sound like you have many options to escape.

As noted they lost connectivity and power before the fire swept through the town. I rely on my phone for emergency messages, especially weather messages. Many, many people these days now have their TV services run through the internet. I imagine after I retire I will switch to Starlink and break the cable to enable world wide connectivity, but at this point it makes no sense. Even satellites can go out depending upon the emergency.

If you know that there is a possible danger and your internet is down having a battery powered radio tuned on a local radio station would likely be a good idea. I have just such a device for these types of emergencies. In fact I have it out right now because we have had several large storms lately knock out internet and power the last few weeks.

https://www.amazon.com/soyond-Generator-Flashlights-Bluetooth-Emergency/dp/B07VNJW46C/ref=asc_df_B07VNJW46C/?tag=&linkCode=df0&hvadid=385267925262&hvpos=&hvnetw=g&hvrand=11287479292271053138&hvpone=&hvptwo=&hvqmt=&hvdev=c&hvdvcmdl=&hvlocint=&hvlocphy=1012944&hvtargid=pla-820788230549&ref=&adgrpid=77670916479&th=1

It provides two large lights, Radio and the ability to charge your hand held devices while taking up minimum space. The small panel will charge it in a 1/2 day or you can charge it on the wall charger. It is less than $50. Fits in a box smaller than a two slice toaster. It doesn't show it in the ad but it also comes with an octopus charging cable that will charge most any device in case you can't locate your cable. It is also light enough that even a small child could carry it.

I don't know if the local radio stations were aware of the problem and made announcements in this case but the Emergency Alert System is still being used, so it may have been, but nobody heard it.
"It's what people know about themselves inside that makes 'em afraid. "

"There's plain few problems can't be solved with a little sweat and hard work."

Uomo Senza Nome

Looks like they put out a red flag warning on the 8th about the danger of the fires. People should have taken note then.

https://www.thegardenisland.com/2023/08/08/hawaii-news/red-flag-warning-issued-for-areas-of-kauai/


Quote"The latest update that I have is 6 a.m. today (Monday) through 6 a.m. Wednesday. It could be extended, depending on the wind and if we get any rain or not," he said. "Our fingers are crossed, but we still gotta plan. Plan for the danger and hope for the best."

I think it is just like most catastrophes, people don't think it is going to happen until it does. Once it starts, it is oftentimes too late to do anything about it. You might think that your odds are pretty good that your town won't burn down because it never happened before. But there is always a firs time.

"It's what people know about themselves inside that makes 'em afraid. "

"There's plain few problems can't be solved with a little sweat and hard work."

EBuff75

It's a valid point about being aware of your surroundings, including natural disasters, regardless of whether you've been specifically informed that there is danger.  There was an article on CNN earlier that brought this home, where a boat captain talked about using her skiff to rescue people, after her own boat burned at the dock.

https://www.cnn.com/us/live-news/hawaii-maui-wildfires-08-11-23/h_634742d15df8fd6c12b7fb75483fd00d

The big question that this raised for me was:  Why was her boat sitting at a dock where it was in danger, rather than just putting out to sea to get away from the flames?  Since the boat is her living, you would think that going to it and moving it out of danger would be a high priority.  The article doesn't detail the WHY of it burning, it just says that she and two others were out in a skiff helping other boats.

Major kudos to her in helping to save lives, but that also could've been done (much easier) from a larger boat that could've taken the skiff aboard to use in shallow / congested areas.  In fact, this is what she ended up doing, when they were taken aboard another boat.
Information - it's all a battle for information. You have to know what's happening if you're going to do anything about it. - Tom Clancy, Patriot Games

Uomo Senza Nome

Currently the number missing is over 1000 people. The death toll is likely to be staggering. 
"It's what people know about themselves inside that makes 'em afraid. "

"There's plain few problems can't be solved with a little sweat and hard work."

flybynight

Quote from: Uomo Senza Nome on August 11, 2023, 02:34:48 PMCurrently the number missing is over 1000 people. The death toll is likely to be staggering. 
Oh my  gosh
"Hey idiot, you should feel your pulse, not see it."  Echo 83

Uomo Senza Nome

Some more information and harrowing tales of survival.

https://www.cbsnews.com/news/hawaii-wildfires-maui-lahaina-death-toll-warning-sirens/

QuoteHawaii Emergency Management Agency spokesperson Adam Weintraub told The Associated Press on Thursday that the department's records don't show that Maui's warning sirens were triggered on Tuesday. Instead, the county used emergency alerts sent to mobile phones, televisions and radio stations, Weintraub said.
It's not clear if those alerts were sent before widespread power and cellular outages cut off most communication to Lahaina.



QuoteThomas Leonard, a 70-year-old retired mailman from Lahaina, didn't know about the fire until he smelled smoke. Power and cell phone service had both gone out earlier that day, leaving the town with no real-time information about the danger.
He tried to leave in his Jeep but had to abandon the vehicle and run to the shore when cars nearby began exploding. He hid behind a seawall for hours, the wind blowing hot ash and cinders over him.



QuoteLahaina, with a few rare exceptions, has been burned down," Green said during a Thursday news conference after walking the ruins of the town with Maui County Mayor Richard Bissen Jr. "Without a doubt, it feels like a bomb was dropped on Lahaina."
"It's what people know about themselves inside that makes 'em afraid. "

"There's plain few problems can't be solved with a little sweat and hard work."

majorhavoc

Front Street in Lahaina



On a hilltop near Kapalua Airport, where residents are able to get cell service



Lahaina residents now being allowed to return to what's left of their community



Hawaii Governor Josh Green doesn't look like he's been getting much sleep

A post-apocalyptic tale of love, loss and redemption. And zombies!
<br />https://ufozs.com/smf/index.php?topic=105.0

Uomo Senza Nome

QuoteMaui County Police Chief John Pelletier estimated the number of missing people at approximately 1,000, though he cautioned that "honestly we don't know."
"Doesn't mean that's how many that we have that have passed. I'm not saying that number at all," he said at Thursday's news conference. "But because we can't contact them, and because they can't come into the greater valley as quickly or as much as we'd like, because they're actually in shelter, until we get some of those basic things set up, we're not going to have that number."

It's going to be a while before they get a handle on things. They are sending in cadaver dogs today. It's very unlikely anyone who remained in town survived. 

Mick Fleetwood had a bar in town that burned. He has already stated that he will rebuild.

The fire department apparently didn't have any brush trucks and couldn't fight the fire effectively. This in addition to the fact that like most First Responder Agencies around the country they were very short manpower.
"It's what people know about themselves inside that makes 'em afraid. "

"There's plain few problems can't be solved with a little sweat and hard work."

Uomo Senza Nome

The death toll is already in record territory for a wildfire and continues to rise. The fire chief was on TV yesterday suggesting that some of the bodies may have been vaporized completely along with personal affects.

Hawaii wildfire becomes deadliest US blaze in more than a century as death toll reaches 93, expected to grow (msn.com)

Hawaii native Jason Momoa says visitors should not come to the island at all. They have enough help and people need time to deal with the tragedy. I know a few celebs like Oprah have showed up to do the normal photo op and pass out goodies but I think Momoa is correct.
"It's what people know about themselves inside that makes 'em afraid. "

"There's plain few problems can't be solved with a little sweat and hard work."

majorhavoc

&#39;We need some help here&#39;: West Maui Residents Say Government Aid is Scant
'We need some help here': West Maui Residents Say Government Aid is Scant

QuoteDays after the deadliest American wildfire in more than a century ignited in West Maui, killing dozens and leveling more than 2,200 buildings, increasingly frustrated residents say they were receiving far more help from an ad hoc network of volunteers than they were from the government.

It comes as no surprise to most UFoZS regulars that in a major disaster, you cannot expect meaningful assistance from the government any time soon.  FEMA and other emergency response agencies admit as much when they say every household should have an emergency kit that will sustain you and your loved ones (including pets!) for at least 72 hours.  That's the least amount of time you're going to be completely on your own following a large scale emergency.

Another takeaway from the horrifying tragedy that has befallen our fellow citizens in Hawaii: invariably, there are always those, many who themselves are reeling from great personal loss, who roll up their sleeves and get busy helping their neighbors. 

Sure, prep deep and be prepared to protect what's yours from the desperate and marauding mobs.  But one of the reason why I prepare is so I'll be in a position to assist those who need help the most. 









A post-apocalyptic tale of love, loss and redemption. And zombies!
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Anianna

It was my understanding that the fires moved incredibly fast and there really was not time to warn locals. 
I suppose we'll learn more in time.

Three issues of concern at this point that I have seen from locals on social media:

1. Resources are incredibly stretched.  Locals are being moved to hotels in unaffected/less affected areas, but food resources and water resources for those who are not placed appear to be too little.

2. The hotels that survivors are being moved to are not turning away vacationers in order to have enough room for everybody.  There has been an outcry that vacationers cancel their trips and not just come anyway.  I'm not sure if any hotels are cancelling reservations for non-local guests, but I would hope some, at least, would take it upon themselves to put the well-being of survivors over profits.

3. Airlines meant well by discounting tickets between the island and the mainland so that more survivors could escape the island entirely, but people are allegedly taking advantage of the reduced airfare to get trips to the island, potentially exacerbating the issue of vacationers impacting needed resources further. 

Anybody who goes to there right now because it seems like a good way to get a discounted vacation is heartless, cruel, and incredibly selfish.  What kind of vacation do they think they are even going to get in a disaster zone??

Again, the issue of non-local residents continuing with their vacations is second-hand information from social media, so maybe it's not the issue it seems to be.  Here's hoping.
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