"Locals Have Been Sounding The Alarm For Years About Lahaina Wildfire Risk"

"While the inferno spread shockingly fast, it didn’t come out of nowhere."

"David woke suddenly in the mid-afternoon. The 56-year-old chef could hear commotion outside and scrambled up from his nap, finding his roommates on the roof of their shared home, holding garden hoses and spraying water on a raging inferno licking closer by the minute.

“No, brah, we got to go,” he yelled. He couldn’t believe they hadn’t woken him up, or the dog who had been lounging in his room, that they were attempting to hose down the fast-growing flames instead of getting away from them as fast as possible. “We got to go!” He ran into the street. It was Tuesday, Aug. 8, and in the town of Lahaina in West Maui, people were screaming and running as the sky rained embers.

There was no warning from anyone about the fast-moving fire — no text, no officials knocking on his door, no sirens.

“It was just, boom!” he said later. “You saw a fire and you’re going to die. That’s how fast it happened. Run for your life.”

That’s what he did."

Anita Hofschneider reports for Grist August 17, 2023.


"The Bidens Will Travel To Maui To Meet With Wildfire Survivors And First Responders" (AP)

"Maui Water Is Unsafe Even With Filters, One Of The Lessons Learned From Fires in California" (AP)

"Maui Sued Big Oil in 2020, Citing Fire Risks and More" (New York Times)

"‘Coral Are Going To Die’: Maui Wildfires Take Toxic Toll On Marine Ecology" (Guardian)

"Maui Fire Lays Bare Utility Missteps Mirrored Across The Country" (Bloomberg Environment)

"Hawaiian Electric Woes Risk Wiping Out the Value of Its Utility" (Bloomberg Environment)

"After The Blaze, Coping With ‘Fire Brain’" (Washington Post)

"Five Years After The Camp Fire, Paradise Survivors See A Hard Future For Maui" (Los Angeles Times)

"A ‘Perfect Storm’ Set Hawaii Ablaze. Experts Say It Could Happen Almost Anywhere" (Los Angeles Times)

Source: Grist, 08/21/2023