Posted by: Quilly | October 23, 2007

Still Burning

The air in our house looks like fog.  Smells much worse and is none too easy to breathe.  OC and I are monitoring my asthma closely.  IF I didn’t sleep with a CPAP we probably couldn’t have stayed here last night.

From the Honolulu Advertizer, online:

Fire in Makaha Valley continues to burn

By Dave Dondoneau
Advertiser Staff Writer

MAKAHA VALLEY — About 30 firefighters were playing the waiting game here over night, watching a fire burn below their post and awaiting first light so they could tackle the stubborn brushfire that has continued to burn through the valley since Friday. “There are parts of the fire in the back of the valley that are tough to get to because of the steep terrain so we’re going to need some helicopter support in the morning,” Fire Department spokesman Capt. Earle Kealoha said shortly after 2:30 a.m. “The fire below us, we should be able to tackle with our ground forces.”

Kealoha and the rest of the firefighters watched the fire from inside the gated community Mauna Olu, which is on a ridge perched above the fire.

“If you look at how the fire has burned it’s almost made a circle around this area going back and forth shifting with the wind since it started on Friday,” Kealoha said, estimating more than 1,000 acres has burned since Friday.

So far, no evacuations have been needed, but a heavy cloud of smoke is covering the Makaha Valley Towers and other residents in the area this morning.

As long as the mauka winds continue to blow, smoke inhalation could be a problem for residents in the area even though the closest the blaze has come to a residence so far is about a half-mile. Kealoha said no smoke inhalation reports had reached the command post as of 3 a.m., however.

HFD had two towers, four engines and two tankers monitoring the blaze most of the night and was joined by another tanker after 4 a.m.

From the HFD command post you could see the fire stretching across a large part of the valley and the original blaze in the back of the valley, which started Friday afternoon, was illuminating over the mountains.

Firefighters had only one helicopter at their disposal yesterday. Kealoha said they’re hoping today to get some additional helicopter support from the military as well as department of forestry to tackle the fire in the back of the valley.

Around midnight, one farmer in the valley self-evacuated some horses and was concerned for some birds and goats that were on the property. Kealoha said around 1 a.m. an engine was sent to guard the farm residence in case the fire inched closer to his home.

From the Mauna Olu fire post, the fire was highly visible and appeared to be burning as if it were a picket fence, covering a thin but long stretch of land. The pocket in the back of the valley, however, couldn’t directly be seen but illuminated over the mountains as a full moon helped light up the sky.

 

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Responses

  1. Oh wow… this is all so sad! California is having a terrible time of it too… I’m sending prayers.

  2. Thanks, Melli.

  3. My family all lives in California, and it is going up in smoke right now also, very serious, forest fires. Especially if they haven’t the man power or resources to put them out.

    The smoke can get pretty intense, can’t it……not good on the lungs especially is you have asthma.

  4. Nea — I hope your family remains safe and out of the path of the fire.

  5. […] Blame it on smoke inhalation. Fortunately, the fire that’s been plaguing us since Friday night appears to be out, at last. Though it was nothing […]


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