UPDATE: Mayor Kim Announces Change in Emergency Procedure

Listen to this Article
1 minute
Loading Audio... Article will play after ad...
Playing in :00

UPDATE: May 31, 2018

A copy of Mayor Harry Kiim’s evacuation order can be downloaded here.

ORIGINAL POST: May 30, 2018, 5:18 p.m.

During the Puna Community Meeting on Tuesday, May 29, 2018, at Pāhoa High School Cafeteria, Hawai‘i County Mayor Harry Kim told attendees that first responders will no longer go door to door warning residents of the threat of lava flows in the restricted evacuation zone in Leilani Estates Subdivision.  

Emergency officials mark properties on Kahukai Street in restricted evacuation zone in Leilani Estates Subdivision with yellow emergency tape, marking homes officials have already evacuated on May 30, 2018. PC: Crystal Richard.


Mayor Kim said that on the nights of May 28 and 29, 2018, first responders performed rescues within Leilani Estates Subdivision.

“We must, as best as we can, allow your life to continue as best that you can and to make rules around that,” Mayor Kim explained. 

Emergency officials have marked homes that are evacuated with yellow emergency tape in the restricted evacuation zone of Leilani Estates, May 30, 2018. PC: Crystal Richard.

“The easiest thing I want you to understand that government usually does is seal off the whole area and say everybody out,” said Mayor Kim. “A couple of road blocks here and there and that’s it. But to me, that’s the worst thing that we can do for you.” 

Yellow emergency tape on a propane tank gate post on Luana Street in Leilani Estates after emergency officials mark homes that have been evacuated, May 30, 2018. PC: Crystal Richard.


Mayor Kim said that after the two nights of emergency rescues back-to-back, he decided on May 29 that new policies were needed.

“I can no longer afford to put residents at risk,” said Mayor Kim. “I can no longer ask of DOCARE, police, fire, national guard to go banging in the dark in a neighborhood they don’t know to say you must get out.” 

Fissure 8 of the Kīlauea Volcano Lower East Rift Zone Eruption on May 30, 2018, from Luana Street in Leilani Estates in Puna on Hawai‘i Island. PC: Crystal Richard.

“We cannot guarantee you we will go door to door anymore,” stated Mayor Kim. “All I know is nature is taking its course. Our job is to recognize that, stay out of harms way and help each other through this adjustment.”


Sponsored Content

Subscribe to our Newsletter

Stay in-the-know with daily or weekly
headlines delivered straight to your inbox.


This comments section is a public community forum for the purpose of free expression. Although Big Island Now encourages respectful communication only, some content may be considered offensive. Please view at your own discretion. View Comments