In wake of Maui’s crisis with 2,000 burned homes 111 dead the Emergency Management Chief resigns

Mauis-EMA-Chief-Resigns Herman Andaya, then Maui's emergency management agency chief, spoke at a news conference this month before his resignation Thursday.

Matthew 24:7 For nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom, and there will be famines and earthquakes in various places.

Important Takeaways:

  • Maui’s emergency management chief resigns, citing health reasons, a day after he defended sirens’ silence during deadly wildfires
  • The resignation of Maui Emergency Management Agency Administrator Herman Andaya is effective immediately, the county said. His post will be filled “as quickly as possible,” Maui County Mayor Richard Bissen said.
  • The wildfires that ignited August 8 have killed at least 111 people – including children – mostly around Lahaina, an economic and cultural hub obliterated by the infernos.
  • And the death toll is expected to rise as searchers – many grieving their own fire losses – keep digging through the charred remains of more than 2,000 burned homes and businesses and “probably still over 1,000” residents remain unaccounted for, Hawaii Gov. Josh Green told CNN on Wednesday.
  • Elsewhere on the island, fires are still burning – though they’re mostly contained – as scrutiny mounts over the official wildfire preparations and response, including the role of the local electricity provider and the siren system.
  • As the deadly fires spread, no one tried to activate Maui’s 80-alarm, all-hazard outdoor siren system, a spokesperson for the Hawaii Emergency Management Agency said last week. Andaya on Wednesday was asked whether he regretted not sounding the alarms, which are part of a larger statewide network.
  • “I do not,” he told reporters, adding he’d worried their blares would have sent many residents inland “into the fire.”
  • Hawaiian Electric – the major power company on Maui – also is facing scrutiny for not shutting down power lines when high winds created dangerous fire conditions.

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