Maui Resident Says We Were Winning Against Fires “Until Water Shut Off” (Video)

A Maui resident has told several news outlets “the water shut off” while he and other members of the Maui community were battling fires.

Ross Hart, a resident of Maui, stated while he was battling fires with his hose alongside neighbors and firefighters, the water shut off.

Hart told the New York Times, “You can’t fight fire when you don’t have water… Just throwing dirt on it doesn’t cut it.”


Another video of Ross Hart by the New York Times:

Firefighter Keahi Ho, who was battling the deadly fire in Lahaina, offered a similar story and stated, “There was just no water in the hydrants.”

Per The New York Times:

During the frantic moments on Tuesday after a wildfire jumped containment near a residential neighborhood in Lahaina, Hawaii, firefighters rushing to slow the spread were distressed to find that their hydrants were starting to run dry.

Hoping to control the blaze as it took root among homes along the hillside nearly a mile above the center of town, fire crews encountered water pressure that was increasingly feeble, with the wind turning the streams into mist. Then, as the inferno stoked by hurricane-force gusts grew, roaring further toward the historic center of town on the island of Maui, the hydrants sputtered and became largely useless. “There was just no water in the hydrants,” said Keahi Ho, one of the firefighters who was on duty in Lahaina.

Across the island in Kula, which has a water system separate from Lahaina’s, 16 structures were destroyed. Ross Hart, one of the homeowners whose property was leveled, said he and others fought their fire for hours, sometimes alone with hoses, other times with the aid of firefighters. But he said that as the night wore on, there was no water in the hoses.

On Sunday, Democratic congresswoman Jill Tokuda revealed Hawaii’s world-renowned alarm system didn’t even sound off.


Hawaii’s ‘First Line of Defense’ Likely Failed During Maui Fires, Says Congresswoman