Home » Maui residents say utility trucks blocked roads as they tried to flee

Maui residents say utility trucks blocked roads as they tried to flee

by NBC News

LAHAINA, Hawaii — Three survivors of the deadly wildfires that ravaged Maui said Wednesday that when the inferno erupted, the main escape route out of town was partly blocked by Hawaiian Electric trucks clearing downed lines and replacing busted power poles.

The result was “epic bumper-to-bumper traffic while we were trying to escape,” said resident Cole Millington, 26. “There were no police officers in sight. What there was were Hawaiian Electric trucks coming in with new telephone poles.

“Instead of waiting for everybody to get out, they were blocking the only way out with their big trucks.”

Millington and one of his roommates, Caitlin Carroll, said that when they started to flee Lahaina around 4 p.m. on Aug. 8, Hawaiian Electric workers were already clearing downed power lines and electrical wires from the Honoapiilani Highway.

“I understand that,” Millington said. “You don’t want to be driving over live wires. But they were also starting to replace the poles while we were all trying to get out. We were like, get the f— off the road and let us get by.”

Millington and Carroll, 27, said they and other drivers were yelling at the crews to get out of the way.

“It made no sense what they were doing,” Millington said. “They could see the sky was black. They could see the city was on fire. They could see the wind was still whipping everything around. But they were already starting to plant new power poles.”

Carroll said she saw several drivers get out of their vehicles with chain saws and run up to help the electrical crews clear the downed poles.

A Hawaiian Electric crew blocks part of a roadway as it tries to clear a downed power line in the Lahaina/Maui area of Hawaii on Aug. 8.Courtesy Cole Millington

“But they were waved away,” she said. “It would be one thing if they were just clearing away downed power lines to let us through. But their trucks were in our escape lanes, and they were already trying to fix the poles, replace the poles, while…

Read the full article here

Have information to send to Urban New Now? Contact our reporters. Advertising inquiries? Contact us. Opinions? Email us.

You may also like

About Us

Urban News Now is your number one website for the latest news affecting the Black community. Follow us now to get the news and updates that matters to you.

Feature Articles

Subscribe to our newsletter to get the latest news and updates. Let's stay updated!

Copyright © 2023 Urban News Now – All Right Reserved

This website uses cookies to improve your experience. We'll assume you're ok with this, but you can opt-out if you wish. Accept Read More