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The Unexpected Aftermath of Hurricane Lane – Renewed Confidence in Our Community

Unusual yellow skies Wednesday night before Hurricane Lane.

Local firefighters, Maui Police Department, National Guard, Maui Electric, neighbors, family, friends, staff and first responders really pulled through and buoyed our confidence during last month’s hurricane winds and fires. The response has been truly amazing.

A huge South Swell hit Thursday afternoon – neighbor Gary’s charging.

We were evacuated from our Puamana condo at 1:45 am Thursday night/Friday morning due to the fires up the hill in Launiupoko. I have never been so happy to see the police — so calm and reassuring — directing us to get in our cars (now!) and head North. We saw police cruisers going through Puamana shining spotlights up in every window and calling out with bullhorns. Police and neighbors were knocking door-to-door, helping people evacuate. I thought we would never see our home again.

The whole sky was lit up with the fires from up the hill. View behind building 129 Pualei Drive.

As we left Puamana, we saw fire engines going back and forth preventing the fire from jumping the Oleander hedge. We evacuated out to Napili where the only effect of the hurricane was some heavy wind and rains. The power didn’t even go out.

Die-hard neighbor Gary out surfing on Friday after the storm…Kauaula Stream brought down the usual dirt and junk.

The next day when we drove around, the number of people in uniform out clearing up from the winds and fire was impressive. I didn’t even realize we had that many police on the island — many with unmarked vehicles. I saw men in army fatigues directing traffic at the Ka’anapali intersection.

So many Maui Electric trucks were out and about, and guys were fixing poles and hustling — most of the island had power within a few hours (except Lahaina). There were also a lot of folks out in the streets giving away free stuff like lunch and bags of ice since their power was out.

The fire literally melted the vinyl fences in Launiupoko.

In the evening when we drove home via Front Street, the entire town of Lahaina was dark due to the power outage, but we noticed the police cruising the streets and shining spotlights, keeping everything quiet and peaceful.

We wanted to get back home to Puamana, even though there was no power, to check the damage. Only my banana trees had been knocked down as well as a few trees around the property. What was encouraging were the first responders who came around that evening with matches and candles, checking that everyone was safe.

Banana trees down on Puakukui drive in Puamana.

The next day, Puamana staff brought bags of ice and were helping to clear the fallen branches.

The neighbors were helpful and kind, and I really feel the event has actually brought the community closer together. It’s so great to see such positive reactions during a time of stress.

Monday morning – business as usual in Puamana

At the island level, it was heartwarming to see the solid response we got from this storm. I heard there were submarines off shore with debris-clearing specialists in case the hurricane really had hit badly. There has been an outpouring of support — people collecting money and volunteering to help rebuild the homes that were burnt.

Our family was so amazed and thankful; we went out and donated to the Firefighter’s Auxiliary. I heard this group gives support to the firefighters in need bringing meals and refreshments during fires and helping the firefighters’ families going through hardships. You can click here to find out more about donating.

The super professional response to Hurricane Lane should be reassuring to all of those who visit or call Maui home.

For more information on Puamana:

Oceanfront Townhome Just Sold in Puamana – Summer Market Gets Some Action

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Marcel DeRoy

September 5, 2018

That is definitely one aspect that attracts me and so many others to the island is the feeling one gets from people. One big ‘ohana. Many different people living together on a rock in the middle of the ocean, looking out for one another. Each doing what they can with the skills they have to make to make paradise what it is. My wife and I can’t wait until we can one day call Mau’i our home.

Anna Severson

September 6, 2018

> Marcel, thanks for the comment. The true meaning of Ohana comes out with challenges like this one. Thanks

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