Two months after devastating wildfires ripped through the Hawaii town of Lahaina, schools in the West Maui community have completed an evacuation route to use in emergencies.
The Office of the Governor stated in a press release that the Hawaiian Department of Transportation constructed the emergency access route at a cost of approximately $550,000. The route spans about 2.5 miles, connecting Lahainaluna Fire Lane to Lahaina Bypass.
“The community stressed the importance of reopening for our Lahaina keiki,” said Governor Green. “Having a mass evacuation route available hopefully will provide reassurance to students, parents, caregivers, and West Maui faculty and staff.”
School officials, Maui Police Department, Maui Fire Department, and HDOT staff will have access keys for the emergency access route, enabling them to open it during evacuations in case of emergencies.
“We greatly appreciate the support from the Department of Transportation, private landowners and Governor Green in prioritizing the safety of our Lahaina school communities as we prepare to reopen to students next week," said Hawaiʻi State Department of Education Superintendent Keith Hayashi.
Additionally, officials say that high-quality tents have been set up at Nahienaena to expand classroom capacity and are equipped with both air conditioning and wooden flooring.
Students are set to return to class starting next week.
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