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Authorities have found or identified more of the missing in Maui fires

Hawaii's governor said there was hope for significant progress in narrowing down the list of those missing after the fires.
Authorities have found or identified more of the missing in Maui fires
Posted at 11:19 PM, Sep 01, 2023

Officials in Hawaii announced on Friday that they had identified another victim of the wildfires on Maui, further reducing the number of those formally missing.

Hawaii Gov. Josh Green said in a video post that there was hope that the number of those known to be missing would ultimately decline on Friday to fewer than 100 people.

"We think the number has dropped down into the double digits, so thank God," he said in the video.

A list of 388 names published earlier was quickly winnowed down when more than 200 people brought forward new information about the missing.

On Friday, according to Maui Police Department tracking, there had been 115 fatalities as a result of the fires.

Officials had identified 50 individuals and notified their families. Officials have identified but not yet located or notified the families of five more individuals.

SEE MORE: Unclear how many lost lives in Lahaina as search for dead nears end

Authorities say search and rescue teams have combed through 100% of the area the fires affected. Response will now shift to cleanup and safety efforts so residents can return to the area.

Until then, access will remain restricted. Officials say the area may still contain hazards such as "ash that may contain toxic, cancer-causing chemicals with debris including broken glass, exposed electrical wire, and other objects. Unstable structures may contain hazardous materials and could collapse, causing injury."

Authorities warned residents that water remained unsafe because contaminants may have entered the water system. On Friday, areas of Lahaina and Upper Kula were instructed to use bottled or delivered water for any of their needs.

Experts believe it could take months or years to restore full water service to the disaster area.

The Lahaina fire remained 90% contained on Friday, with an estimated 2,170 acres burned.

SEE MORE: Communities on Maui could be waiting a long time for safe water

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