Hawaiian Beaches Close After Wastewater Spills

Heavy rain causes trouble in paradise as Waikiki beaches close
Hawaiian Beaches Close After Wastewater Spills

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Heavy rains caused several wastewater discharges across Oahu, Hawaii, early this week, including a 500,000-gallon spill that resulted in the closure of Waikiki beaches.

Stormwater rushed into the Kaneohe Wastewater Pretreatment Facility, causing a wastewater discharge into Kawa Stream. The Kailu Regional Wastewater Treatment Plant also experienced problems when high flows caused a solids contractor tank to overflow. That spill sent 4,950 gallons of untreated wastewater into Nuupia Pond.

The largest spill — 500,000 gallons — occurred near the Moana Wastewater Pump Station when stormwater overflowed from manholes and entered storm drains. Officials say some of the problems occurred when people illegally opened manholes to alleviate flooding during the heavy rains.

The state health department issued a brown water advisory for all of the islands because of stormwater runoff. Heavy rains hit Oahu, Kauai and Maui on Monday, resulting in flash flood watches. The Honolulu Airport reported 3.53 inches of rain, which broke the previous record set in 1966.

The heavy rains come as a ninth named tropical storm — Ignacio — strengthens near Hawaii. 

Sources: Star Advertiser, Pacific Business News, Hawaii News Now

"Waikiki Beach" by Ramey Logan is licensed under CC BY 3.0



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