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UPDATE 4: Water Quality in Hilo Bay ‘All-Clear’

April 4, 2017, 8:47 AM HST (Updated April 6, 2017, 7:23 AM) · 0 Comments
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    UPDATE 4: April 5, 4:57 p.m.

    The state Department of Health has announced that samples of Hilo Bay water taken Wednesday, April 5, 2017, have come up clear throughout the Hilo Bay area that had been impacted by a sewage spill earlier in the week.

    Meanwhile, the state Department of Environmental Management, which has been managing mitigation efforts following the spill, worked to remove all remaining warning signs that had barred the public from water activities.

    Areas receiving warning signs immediately following the spill spanned from the mouth of the Wailuku River to as far east as Reed’s Bay.

    “The Department of Health has cleared all of Hilo Bay; the water testing data shows a return to normal,” said DEM Director Bill Kucharski.  “It’s all clear.”

    The incident began when a blocked sewer line sent an estimated 41,000 gallons of raw sewage into the Wailuku River and Hilo Bay on Monday morning, and the public was asked to follow posted signs and stay out of the water.

    DEM took water samples in the Wailuku River and as far east as Reed’s Bay following the spill.

    For further information,  contact Bill Kucharski of the Department of Environmental Management at (808) 217-2750.

    UPDATE 3: April 5, 3:21 p.m.

    The Department of Environmental Management reports that water quality levels in the spill area have returned to normal.

    The state Department of Health confirmed that all Hilo Bayfront area beach parks can now be opened.

    The county is mobilizing to open up the area at this time.

    UPDATE 2: April 5, 10 a.m.

    Hilo Bayfront area beach parks from Wailoa River mouth near Suisan to Wailuku River remain closed.

    Beach parks from Wailoa River mouth to Hilo Harbor, including Lili‘uokalani Park and Banyan Drive, are now open.

    Hawai‘i County continues to test water quality and conditions will be monitored daily.

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    Residents and visitors in the affected areas are advised to abide by all signs posted along the lower Wailuku River area and Hilo Bay.

    The signs will remain in effect until the state Department of Health determines water quality is safe.

    UPDATE: April 4, 10 a.m.

    As a result of yesterday’s sewage spill that entered the Wailuku River, Hilo Bay and all beach parks within the break wall area are closed.

    The blockage in the sewer line that caused the discharge into Hilo bay has been repaired.

    The county continues its testing of the water quality and conditions are being monitored daily.

    Residents and visitors in the affected areas are advised to abide by all signs posted along the lower Wailuku River area and Hilo Bay.

    The signs will remain in effect until the state Department of Health determines water quality is safe.

    PREVIOUS POST: April 3, 2017

    The Department of Environmental Management reported a sewage spill yesterday, Monday, April 3, along Waianuenue Avenue which entered the Wailuku River in Hilo.

    Work crews have cleared the blockage and water quality testing is being conducted.

    Hilo Bay and all parks within the break wall area are closed.

    Residents and visitors in the affected are advised to abide by all signs posted along the lower Wailuku River area and Hilo Bay.

    The signs will remain in effect until the DOH determines water quality is safe.

    Updates will be posted as this situation changes.

    Hilo sewage spill, Monday, April 3. Crystal Richard photo.

    Hilo sewage spill, Monday, April 3. Crystal Richard photo.

    Hilo sewage spill, Monday, April 3. Crystal Richard photo.

    Hilo sewage spill, Monday, April 3. Crystal Richard photo.

    Hilo sewage spill, Monday, April 3. Crystal Richard photo.

    Hilo sewage spill, Monday, April 3. Crystal Richard photo.

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