Hurricane Tracker

Coast Guard Reopens Hilo & Kawaihae Harbors

August 24, 2018, 7:57 PM HST
Listen to this Article
2 minutes
Loading Audio...
A
A
A

The Coast Guard Captain of the Port reopened the Hilo Harbor and Kawaihae Harbor ports on the Big Island as of 3 p.m. Friday following the passing of Tropical Storm Lane and thorough port assessments.

Maui, Honolulu and Kaua‘i County ports remain closed in port condition Zulu.

“One of the Coast Guard’s top priorities is the safety of life,” said Capt. Michael Long, Coast Guard Captain of the Port. “Opening the ports to receive critical supplies is not only vital to commerce, it saves lives. After completing our port assessment process, we opened the ports of Hilo and Kawaihae. This means the barges offshore can bring in their cargo, in addition to the cargo already at the port, to be processed and distributed to the residents of the Big Island.”

Crews from the Department of Land and Natural Resources conducted a first light assessment of the two ports. U.S. Coast Guard Cutters Oliver Berry (WPC 1124) and Joseph Gerczak (WPC 1126) conducted post-storm assessments on the port of Hilo along with a maritime industry tug. Another industry tug assessed Kawaihae. The teams surveyed aids to navigation and evaluated damage to water channels and shore facilities. The Coast Guard coordinates with the State of Hawai‘i and port partners to ensure vessels can transit safely, tie up and receive services, offload their cargo and return to the sea.

Coast Guard reopens ports on Big Island of Hawai‘i. Courtesy photo.

The Coast Guard plans to assess the other ports of Hawai‘i as weather and sea conditions allow crews to do so safely.

ARTICLE CONTINUES BELOW AD

As the ports open, the Coast Guard and port partners will prioritize the incoming ships ensuring the most critical supplies reach the residents of Hawai‘i first.

ARTICLE CONTINUES BELOW AD

“I want to emphasize that this is a positive first step in reopening all of the ports,” Long said. “These assessments will happen as quickly and safely as possible. We still have a long way to go and must consider future impacts from the storm as it continues to pass through the state.”

The Coast Guard will continue to Broadcast Notice to Mariners and send out a Marine Safety Information Bulletin to notify the maritime community of port condition changes. All maritime users are requested to monitor the progress of this storm and heed all warnings.

Comments

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

Newsletters

Get a quick summary of what’s happening on the Big Island with our daily & weekly email of news highlights.