East Hawaii News

Hawaii Volcanoes, County Firefighters Get Brushfire Under Control

November 3, 2012, 10:16 AM HST
* Updated November 3, 10:21 AM
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A brush fire in the area of Keauhou Ranch in Volcano blackened about four acres before being brought under control by midnight Friday.

Nine firefighters from Hawaii Volcanoes National Park and 14 personnel from the Hawaii County Fire Department were among those battling the blaze in an area of ohia and koa trees and grassland. The fire, which officials said grew steadily after being discovered around 3 p.m., was located on Bishop Estate land near the Keauhou Bird Sanctuary where rare native birds are cared for and bred.

The fire was 80% contained by nightfall with the help of numerous water drops by two helicopters drawing water from a nearby reservoir. It was considered 95% contained by midnight.

The firefighters employed three fire engines, one tanker from the county and another from a volunteer fire company, and several brush trucks. Other equipment being used included a tanker, brush truck and utility truck provided by the national park.

Federal and county personnel worked to extinguish hot spots during the night. More helicopter water drops were expected this morning.

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The cause of the fire was not immediately determined.

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