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Controlled Fire Planned for Kalama`ula

Maui Fire Department News Release

Between Feb. 2 and Feb. 7, Maui County Fire Department will employ prescribed, or controlled, fire in the Kalama`ula area. This multi-agency effort will be an exercise to satisfy national requirements to be certified as a Type 3 Incident Management Team, provide live fire training to personnel and remove hazardous levels of overgrown plant material.

During these dates, controlled fires may take place between the hours of 7:30 a.m. and 5 p.m. The live training will be conducted north of the old Kalama`ula area and west of the Kalama`ula Mauka subdivision. The burn area will consist of 60 acres total, broken down into separate blocks to be burned each day of the exercise. It will be conducted by Maui County Fire Department and Department of Public Works, in consult with the Hawaii Department of Health, Maui Police Department and Department of Hawaiian Homelands.

This prescribed, or controlled, fire is necessary to develop skills, knowledge and abilities required to use as a suppression tactic during wildland fire incidents. This tactic will enable firefighters to mitigate wildland fires more efficiently and effectively. The Maui Incident Management Team will also utilize these training exercises to satisfy national requirements to be certified as a Type 3 Incident Management Team. Type 1 Incident Team members will be assisting during this event.

Prescribed fire greatly reduces the potential for wildfire. It will remove the hazardous level of fuel on the property. The longer vegetation accumulates, the more destructive an eventual fire will be, burning hotter, traveling faster and having unpredictable results. Wildfires cause vast economic damage and lead to major inconveniences for the public.

The Maui County Department of Fire and Public Safety would like to ensure the public that all foreseeable hazards have been addressed and contingency plans have been developed. Firefighters and public safety is our number one priority as we begin this live fire training. Although weather conditions, including relative humidity and wind direction, are taken into consideration, nearby residents should expect temporary smoke in any prescribed fire activity. Also, drivers shuld pay extra attention while traveling through or adjacent to the burn areas.

For more information, please contact Captain Eddie Taomoto at 808-270-5542 or 808-283-3736, or by email at Edward.Taomoto@co.maui.hi.us.

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