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West Maui will have its own disaster plan

By Staff | Oct 5, 2017

Although we have been lucky so far, the 2017 Pacific hurricane season isn’t over until Nov. 30.

Seeing the devastation caused by Hurricane Harvey in Texas and Hurricane Maria in Puerto Rico, we wonder how isolated West Maui would cope with a storm that would knock out power, cause flooding, close roads and generate dangerous winds.

The good news is the West Maui Taxpayers Association is working with the Maui Emergency Management Agency, Pacific Disaster Center and the state Emergency Management Agency to develop a customized disaster plan designed to meet West Maui’s specific needs.

Through the Hawaii Hazards Awareness & Resilience Program (HHARP), experts have been participating in Community Disaster Planning Meetings with members of the West Maui community.

Sharon Mielbrecht of the Pacific Disaster Center will speak at the next meeting on Tuesday, Oct. 9, at the Lahaina Civic Center Social Hall at 5:30 p.m. All are welcome and encouraged to attend.

This process will educate West Siders on hazard understanding and offer tools and information resources to guide community mitigation, preparedness, response and recovery planning.

WMTA noted, “The West Maui Taxpayers Association invites you to join us and be a part of the solution to plans that may well be the reason why lives will be saved when disasters strike. Please put these meetings on your calendar and plan to attend!”

HHARP is one of many projects that WMTA is involved with right now.

The group is currently recruiting new members and seeking donations for its community efforts that include participating in the update of the West Maui Community Plan, supporting the Lahaina Bypass and improvements to Honoapiilani Highway, lobbying for affordable housing and backing actions to help local police and firefighters.

Learn more about WMTA and its community initiatives by visiting www.westmaui.org.