Bikeshare Hawaii Island Now Available in Kona

Kailua-Kona now has a new, viable transportation option that provides economic, health and ultimate convenience benefits. Bikeshare Hawaii Island is now available for residents and visitors alike along Kailua Village and points of interest. For anyone who wants to leave their car parked during a short trip, or enhance their transportation options Bikeshare is for you. In other cities with a bikeshare system, local businesses also benefit, with an increase in visibility on the street-level, because people are out of their cars and more aware of the shops around them.

Prices start at $3.50.

Bikesharing encourages a healthy and fun way to get around, and helps promote the continuous development of appropriate infrastructure for biking, bike safety and bike ridership on Hawai’i island.

Bikeshare Hawaii Island is a non-profit 501(c)3 program created through the joint efforts of the County of Hawaii Department of Research and Development, the Mayor’s Active Living Advisory Council and PATH. Bikeshare Hawaii Island advances Mayor Billy Kenoi’s vision of healthy and active Hawaii Island communities.

Get the latest in Bikeshare news by checking out our Facebook page. Website:

For sponsorship information, call contact Tina Clothier at 808-561-9212 or email

Bikeshare Hawaii Island’s first few Tweets:

  • Kona Ground Transportation has never been so easy!
  • Bikeshare is now available in Kona! Just swipe and bike Ali’i Drive!
  • Three bike kiosks now on Ali’i Drive in , swipe a cc to get a bike. $3.50 will get you to most popular beach destinations!

Hawaii Students Create Star Wars Simulation on World’s Best Hybrid Visualization System

In honor of the 40th Anniversary of Star Wars, University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa engineering graduate student Noel Kawano and computer science student Ryan Theriot created a 3D immersive visualization project—Star Wars Squadron and Tatooine.

Developed at the Laboratory for Advanced Visualization and Applications (LAVA) by MS graduate Noel Kawano and MS candidate Ryan Theriot. “Star Wars Squadron & Tatooine” immerses users in a real-time interactive action game in the newly developed Hybrid Reality Environment, Destiny CyberCANOE.

Users can battle with lightsabers or dogfight through a universe filled with starfighters, TIE fighters and an armada of star destroyers.

The (research and fun) possibilities are endless now that UH Mānoa is home to the best hybrid visualization system in the world that combines immersive virtual reality with ultra-high-resolution display walls. The Destiny-class CyberCANOE, which stands for cyber-enabled Collaboration Analysis Navigation and Observation Environment.

“We wanted to take advantage of the [Destiny-class CyberCANOE’s] capabilities and make something really cool,” Kawano said.

CyberCANOE users can go under the sea, explore outer space and probe microscopic elements of the human body without leaving campus.

Computer and Information Sciences Professor Jason Leigh is the system’s creator. His students were deeply involved in the design and construction of the CyberCANOE with investment and partnership from the National Science Foundation and the UH Academy for Creative Media System.

With 256 megapixels, the cylindrical CyberCANOE is the ultimate tool for scientists and researchers to visualize big data at resolutions that are 100-times better than commercial 3D displays. The diameter is 16 feet, and the walls are eight-feet high.

The Destiny-class cost about $250,000 to build and is actually the seventh and best CyberCANOE Leigh has built in Hawaiʻi over the past couple of years. His Laboratory for Advanced Visualization Applications (LAVA), where the Destiny-class CyberCANOE is housed, is planning to hold an open house in August 2017.

EPA Announces $900,000 to the Honolulu Authority for Rapid Transportation to Assess and Clean Up Contaminated Sites on Oahu

Today, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency announced that the Honolulu Authority for Rapid Transportation (HART) will receive a total of $900,000 in federal grant funds for brownfield site revitalization efforts. These grants are part of the $56.8 million awarded nationally to 172 recipients to assess and clean up historically contaminated properties, also known as brownfields, to help local governments redevelop vacant and unused properties, transforming communities and local economies.

“EPA is committed to working with communities to redevelop Brownfields sites which have plagued their neighborhoods. EPA’s Assessment and Cleanup grants target communities that are economically disadvantaged and include places where environmental cleanup and new jobs are most needed,” said EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt. “These grants leverage considerable infrastructure and other investments, improving local economies and creating an environment where jobs can grow. I am very pleased the President’s budget recognizes the importance of these grants by providing continued funding for this important program.”

The Honolulu Authority for Rapid Transportation (HART) will receive two EPA Brownfield grants to assess and clean up contaminated properties in Oahu.  Both grants support development of the future Honolulu High-Capacity Transit Corridor Project. EPA’s $300,000 Brownfield Assessment grant will focus on properties along the City Center section of the transit corridor. This grant-funded effort aligns with previous EPA funding awards that support transit-oriented redevelopment efforts along the transit line. HART will use the second $600,000 EPA grant to remove soil contaminated with arsenic and metals from three properties, which will be redeveloped into a rail station known as the Iwilei Station.

Revitalization of the brownfield properties along the Honolulu High-Capacity Transit Corridor Project will support sustainable, compact and mixed-use development that encourages higher densities and energy conservation, as well as promoting the use of transit, walking and cycling.

Overview of the funds being announced today:

  • $25 million to communities who are receiving assessment and cleanup funding for the first time
  • $17.5 million of the assessment and cleanup funding will benefit small and rural communities with populations less than 10,000
  • Recipients will each receive approximately $200,000 – $600,000 in funding to work on individual sites or several sites within their community
  • These funds will provide communities with resources necessary to determine the extent of site contamination, remove environmental uncertainties and clean up contaminated properties where needed.

Studies have shown that residential property values near brownfields sites that are cleaned up increased between 5 and 15.2% within a 1.24-mile radius of that site. A study analyzing data near 48 brownfield sites shows that an estimated $29 to $97 million in additional tax revenue was generated for local governments in a single year after cleanup. This is two to seven times more than the $12.4 million EPA contributed to those brownfields.

As of May 2017, more than 124,759 jobs and $24 billion of public and private funding has been leveraged as a result of assessment grants and other EPA Brownfields grants. On average, $16.11 was leveraged for each EPA Brownfields dollar and 8.5 jobs leveraged per $100,000 of EPA Brownfields funds expended on assessment, cleanup, and revolving loan fund cooperative agreements.

View the list of the FY 2017 applicants selected for funding here:

More on EPA’s Brownfields program:

More on successful Brownfields stories:

Hawaii State Announces Details of Japan Airlines’ New Daily, Non-Stop Service to Kona

New flights expected to bring in nearly $10 M in annual tax revenue

Gov. David Ige, Japan Airlines and the Hawai‘i Department of Transportation announced details of JAL’s return to the Kona International Airport at Keāhole on Hawai‘i Island. JAL is starting a new daily, non-stop service between Narita International Airport in Tokyo and the Kona International Airport.

The new service is an addition to JAL’s six current non-stop flights between Tokyo, Osaka, Nagoya and Honolulu.

“Japan Airlines has offered continuous service to the State of Hawai‘i for more than 60 years now. Over the years, JAL has played a significant role in the expansion of our state’s tourism industry, economy and the cultural exchange we enjoy with Japan. We are excited about the new daily service to Kona, which is well on its way to becoming Hawai‘i’s second major international port of entry,” said Gov. Ige.

“Japan Airlines is pleased to announce return-to-service between Narita and Kona International Airport at Keahole (starting September 15, 2017),” said Yoshiharu Ueki, President of Japan Airlines. “For over 60 years, JAL has been serving and promoting travel to the beautiful state of Hawai‘i and this latest route gives our customers based in Japan and in other Asia gateways a second destination in addition to our six daily flights from Narita, Nagoya and Osaka to Honolulu.”

JAL’s new service is expected to result in about $84.2 million in visitor expenditures and about $9.8 million in state tax revenue, according to the Hawai‘i Tourism Authority. The service will also support about 900 jobs on Hawai‘i Island.

The Narita/Kona flights will operate with fully revamped JAL SKY SUITE 767 (767-300ER) aircraft and will be fitted with the airline’s most current interiors. The aircraft seats 199 passengers.

The flights will depart Narita at 9:25 p.m. and arrive in Kona at 10:15 a.m. Service from Kona will depart at 12:15 p.m. and arrive in Narita at 4:00 p.m. the next day. Schedules are subject to government approval.

The new daily flights are set to begin on Sept. 15, 2017.

Victim Identified and Driver Charged Following Fatal Wreck in Hawaii Volcanoes National Park

The man killed in a single-vehicle accident Sunday night in Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park has been identified as John Ashley Becker, 48, of Texas.

The driver, Kenneth J. Ewing, 43, of Pāhoa, has been charged in federal court with negligent homicide in the first degree.

Kenneth Ewing

A third man was transported by ambulance to Hilo Medical Center for treatment.

Ewing was Ka‘ū-bound shortly before 9 p.m. Sunday when he lost control of the white Toyota Tacoma near the 33-mile marker on Hwy. 11 in Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park. The vehicle rolled over, and ejected all three occupants. Becker was found pinned beneath the truck and pronounced dead on the scene by Hawai‘i County Fire Department medics.

This is the second fatal traffic accident in the park this year.

If convicted, Ewing faces up to 10 years in federal prison, and a fine up to $250,000. The charges are only allegations. A person is presumed innocent unless and until he or she is proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.

The case is being investigated by the National Park Service, with technical assistance provided by the Hawai‘i Police Department. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney, Sara Ayabe.

Radar Studies on Kaua`i Highlight Perilous State of Endangered Seabirds

An analysis of long-term radar studies on Kaua‘i has revealed massive declines in populations of the island’s two endangered seabirds, the Kauai Endangered Seabird Recovery Project (KESRP) announced today.  The study, due to be published online in the scientific journal Condor on June 5th, shows that between 1993 and 2013 populations of the ‘A‘o (Newell’s Shearwater) declined by 94% and Ua‘u (Hawaiian Petrel)  by 78%.

Newell’s Shearwater chick. Photo by Andre Raine

“The results of this study demonstrate just how poorly these two iconic birds have fared on Kaua‘i over that time period,” said Dr. André Raine, lead author of the paper.  “With the majority of our radar sites showing massive decreases in numbers of these birds over the years, populations of the birds are in a rapid downward trajectory – particularly in the south and east of the island.  The study highlights just how critical recent conservation initiatives for the species on Kaua‘i are if we are to have a hope of reversing the situation.”

The study used truck mounted radar at 15 standard sites around the island.  Radar surveys at these sites were started in 1993 by Robert Day and Brian Cooper of ABR Inc., and were continued near-annually by the Kaua‘i Endangered Seabird Recovery Project from 2006 onwards.  Radar is utilized worldwide to study birds and is a key tool to monitor the island’s seabirds as they fly overhead in darkness to and from their breeding colonies and the sea.  The radar allows observers to “see” the birds flying overhead in the darkness as a series of dots passing across the radar screen.  By assessing the speed of movement, the direction of travel, and the time that the event is recorded, birds are identified to species.

“Kaua‘i’s endangered seabirds are under threat from a whole suite of issues, including introduced predators such as feral cats, powerline collisions, light attraction and invasive plants – as well as threats at sea which could include overfishing, by-catch and the effects of climate change.

Kaua‘i holds 90% of the world’s population of ‘A‘o and a significant proportion of the world’s population of Ua‘u, so it is vital that we protect these birds,” continued Dr Raine. “Recent conservation initiatives on the island from a wide range of different organizations, land-owners and entities have shown that people are become more and more aware of the perilous state of these birds.  This gives me hope that we can reverse these spiraling trends.”

Radar work will continue on Kaua‘i in 2017, starting now until the middle of July.  For more information on this critical component of KESRP’s work, please visit the project website at The Kaua‘i Endangered Seabird Recovery Project is a joint project between the Department of Land & Natural Resources (Division of Forestry & Wildlife) and the University of Hawai‘i (Pacific Co-operative Studies Unit).  Radar surveys are funded via a State Wildlife Grant from the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Services.

State of Hawaii Receives $2.5 Million Payment From Volkswagen

Direct payment to State of Hawaii is in addition to restitution to individual diesel VW owners and other large penalties for emissions fraud

Attorney General Doug Chin and Office of Consumer Protection Executive Director Stephen Levins today announced that the State of Hawaii has received a $2.5 million direct payment from Volkswagen. The payment is part of a multistate settlement involving claims that the car manufacturer violated state consumer protection laws prohibiting unfair or deceptive trade practices by marketing, selling, and leasing diesel vehicles equipped with illegal and undisclosed defeat device software.

2.0 liter diesel engine settlements

On June 28, 2016, 43 states and jurisdictions announced a coordinated settlement to resolve state claims against Volkswagen AG, Audi AG, Volkswagen Group of America, Inc., Porsche AG, and Porsche Cars, North America, Inc. – collectively referred to as Volkswagen. This partial settlement covered vehicles equipped with 2.0-liter diesel engines, including the VW Jetta model years 2009-2015, VW Golf model years 2010-2015, and VW Passat model years 2012-2015, among others.

As part of the settlement, Volkswagen agreed to pay directly to the states more than $1,000 per eligible vehicle or more than $570 million nationwide. Of this amount, Hawaii received an enhanced allocation of more than $2,744 per eligible vehicle registered in Hawaii, for a total of $2.5 million.

In October 2016, Volkswagen settled a separate lawsuit for federal claims brought by the United States and the Federal Trade Commission involving the same Volkswagen and Audi vehicles equipped with 2.0-liter diesel engines. As part of this settlement, Volkswagen agreed to: (1) provide cash payments to affected individual consumers; (2) buy back or modify certain Volkswagen and Audi 2.0-liter diesel vehicles; (3) pay $20 million to the states to establish a fund that state attorneys general can utilize for future training and initiatives; and (4) invest $2 billion over the next 10 years for the development of non-polluting cars, or Zero Emission Vehicles, and supporting infrastructure. In addition, Volkswagen must pay $2.7 billion into the Environmental Mitigation Trust to support environmental programs to reduce emissions of harmful oxides of nitrogen, of which Hawaii’s proportionate share was $7.5 million.

3.0 liter diesel engine settlements

On May 17, 2017, a federal district court approved additional settlement agreements resolving consumer claims and claims brought by the United States and the FTC involving certain Volkswagen, Audi, and Porsche vehicles equipped with 3.0-liter diesel engines. Vehicles covered by these settlement agreements include the VW Touareg model years 2009 – 2016, Audi Q7 model years 2009 – 2015, and Porsche Cayenne Diesel model years 2013 – 2016, among others. Under the terms of these settlement agreements, Volkswagen agreed to: (1) provide cash payments to affected individual consumers; (2) buy back or modify Generation One Volkswagen 3.0-liter vehicles; (3) provide an approved emissions modification for Generation Two Volkswagen 3.0-liter vehicles; and (4) pay an additional $225 million into the Environmental Mitigation Trust.

As a result of the latest agreement between the United States and Volkswagen, Hawaii’s allocation under the Environmental Mitigation Trust increased from $7.5 million to $8.125 million, which Hawaii may request to support eligible mitigation projects in the state.

Full details of the settlements, including information for affected consumers, are available online at and

14-Year-Old Boy Dies in One-Vehicle Crash

A 14-year-old Pahoa boy died from injuries sustained in a one-vehicle crash occurring in Pahoa.

On (April 14). at 10:07 p.m. a Puna patrol officer responded to a reported theft of a 2001 Jeep sport-utility vehicle which just occurred at a residence on Palani Street in Pahoa.

The officer, while conducting checks for the stolen vehicle, heard the screeching of tires and the sound of a collision.

At 11:28 p.m., the officer located the stolen Jeep which had collided with a utility pole on South Puni Makai Loop, near Ono Street.

The boy, the driver of the Jeep, was taken to the Hilo Medical Center for his injuries and then medevaced to Queen’s Medical Center where he was pronounced dead on (April 16), at 10:55 a.m.

An autopsy has been ordered to determine the exact cause of death.

The Area I Traffic Enforcement Unit has initiated a Coroner’s Inquest investigation.

Police ask anyone who witnessed or has information regarding the crash to call Officer Clarence Acob at 961-2293. Tipsters who prefer to remain anonymous may call the island-wide Crime Stoppers at 961-8300.

This is the 18th traffic fatality this year compared with 10 at this time last year.

Honolulu International Airport is Now The Daniel K. Inouye International Airport (HNL)

With immense pride the Hawaii Department of Transportation (HDOT) officially announces the Honolulu International Airport is now the Daniel K. Inouye International Airport (HNL).

HNL is officially the Daniel K. Inouye International Airport. Photos courtesy: HDOT

“Dan spent more than 50 years flying between Honolulu and Washington, DC. representing the people of Hawaii. The iconic tower upon which his name is now affixed is a beacon and beckoning symbol to visitors and residents alike. I know he is pleased and smiling down on us,” said Mrs. Irene Hirano Inouye. “Thank you for this honor for Dan and the Inouye family.”

“Senator Inouye made a lasting and positive impact on our state, nation and world,” said Gov. David Ige. “His life reflects who we are today as a people, place and culture. His work as a public servant tells a modern-day story that will benefit future generations. It is fitting that our international airport will be named after the senator so that we may honor and remember him and others of his generation for the legacy they left behind. I hope those who work at and travel through our international airports will be reminded of Senator Inouye’s life and the values he lived by.”

The new Daniel K. Inouye International Airport sign on the Airports Division District Office Tower is black during the day and illuminates white at night. The picture shows the mauka side of the building.

Daniel Ken Inouye was born in Honolulu September 7, 1924 and graduated from William McKinley High School, the University of Hawaii at Manoa and George Washington University. He served as Hawaii’s first representative in Congress in 1959. In 1962 he was elected to the U.S. Senate making him the first Japanese American to serve in both the House and Senate, ultimately representing Hawaii for a combined 53 years. He was the second longest serving Senator in history and rose to the rank of president pro tempore, which is third on the presidential succession, making him the highest ranking Asian American public official in U.S. history. During his tenure he continuously secured much needed federal funding for Hawaii which benefited projects on all islands.

New signage displaying Daniel K. Inouye International Airport has been installed on the Airports Division District Office Tower and above the roadway signs at the entrance of the facility.

Senator Inouye is a Congressional Medal of Honor recipient, the nation’s highest award for military valor, for his heroic and courageous actions while serving in the decorated 442nd Regimental Combat Team during World War II. Despite being shot in the stomach and having his right arm lost to a rifle grenade, Inouye continued fighting and leading his men in combat, eventually destroying multiple German bunkers in the battle.

After his death in 2012, Senator Inouye was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom, making him the first senator to receive both the Medal of Freedom and the Medal of Honor. For additional information regarding the distinguished and legendary career of Daniel K. Inouye please visit

In a touching moment Maggie Inouye, granddaughter of Sen. Daniel K. Inouye, placed her hand with blessed Hawaiian water on to her grandfather’s face during the blessing ceremony while Kahu Kordell Kekoa, Mrs. Irene Hirano Inouye and Ken Inouye, Maggie’s dad, looked on.

The State Legislature approved House Concurrent Resolution 88 Senate Draft 2 in the 2016 session calling on the airport to be renamed after Senator Daniel K. Inouye. The resolution passed unanimously. To read the resolution visit

The HDOT Airports Division has replaced the iconic “Honolulu International Airport” lettering above the district office building with new signage stating, “Daniel K. Inouye International Airport.” The lettering is black during the day and illuminated white at night. New signage over the roadway signs above the entrances to the airport from the H-1 Freeway are also in place. The general contractor for the project is Global Specialty Contractors, Inc. The total cost of the new signage, parts, materials, labor, removal of old signs and repairs to the structures for new signs was nearly one million dollars. Because HDOT is self-sustaining no general funds were used, meaning no tax money was spent on the project. Instead HDOT generates its own revenue through user fees. In the Airport Division’s case, project costs, operating expenses and salaries primarily comes from concessions and airline revenue. Primary sources of funding include, landing fees, terminal rentals, parking revenue and passenger facility charges.

Kahu Kordell Kekoa (from left to right); Honolulu Mayor Kirk Caldwell; Gov. David Ige’s Chief of Staff Mike McCartney; Mrs. Irene Hirano Inouye; Ken Inouye, Sen. Inouye’s son; Maggie Inouye, Sen. Inouye’s granddaughter; U.S. Representative Tulsi Gabbard and State Senate President Ronald Kouchi participate in the traditional untying of the maile lei during the ceremony.

With more than 20 million annual passengers, 23,000 employees, more than 300,000 aircraft operations a year, and encompassing an area larger than Waikiki, the former Honolulu International Airport, is the biggest and most active airport in the state. The 24/7 facility is visited by residents and visitors from around the world. Twenty-five airlines serve the airport offering direct flights to and from the neighbor islands and dozens of national and international destinations.

HDOT will officially reference the facility as the Daniel K. Inouye International Airport, however the Federal Aviation Administration will continue to use the HNL acronym.

A Daniel K. Inouye exhibit showcases the life and career of the late Senator through photographs and memorabilia. The exhibit is located in the Overseas Terminal near gate 24, which is one of the busiest sections of the airport educating thousands of people a day about his contributions and legacy.

In addition, there is an exhibit celebrating the Nisei veterans of World War II, many of whom fought with the 100th Infantry Battalion, 442nd Regimental Combat Team, Military Intelligence Service and 1399th Engineer Construction Battalion. Sen. Inouye fought with the 442nd Regimental Combat Team, the most decorated unit in U.S. history based on size and length of service. The exhibit was produced to preserve and perpetuate the acts of heroism and the achievements of the Japanese American soldiers in World War II. It is located in the makai end of the Interisland Terminal near gate 56.

Ken and Jessica Inouye and their daughter Maggie helped Kahu Kordell Kekoa bless the new signs that are displayed above the Daniel K. Inouye International Airport District Office Tower. All Photos Courtesy: HDOT

This is the fourth name change in the airport’s long history. It originally opened in 1927 as the John Rodgers Airport. After surviving the attack on Pearl Harbor the airport was renamed Honolulu Airport in 1947. The International designation was included in 1951.

The airport utilizes six runways, including two sealanes. A unique airport feature is the Reef Runway, which was the first major runway in the world to be built offshore. There are three cultural gardens featuring Hawaiian, Chinese and Japanese heritage, which offer travelers a relaxing break where they can learn about native Asian and Hawaiian plants and architecture.

For additional information about the Daniel K. Inouye airport and its features visit

Japan Airlines Announces New Routes to Kona – Hawaii Governor to Hold News Conference Tomorrow

Japan Airlines (JAL) yesterday announced that it will launch new nonstop services between Tokyo (Narita) and Melbourne starting September 1, 2017, and between Tokyo (Narita) and Kona from September 15, 2017.

Tomorrow, Governor Ige will hold a news conference detailing the new routes with Mayor Harry Kim and Japan Airlines Director/Chairman Masaru Onisihi

Melbourne will become the second destination in Australia within JAL’s international network. Additionally, a nonstop service will return between Tokyo (Narita) and Kona, the gateway to Hawaii Island, which is one of the most popular destinations in Hawaii and surrounded by a rich natural environment.

The JAL Group will continue to embrace new challenges to deliver greater customer convenience and comfort, enhance its networks, and improve the quality of products and services.

JAL currently operates six daily flights to Honolulu, including four daily flights from Narita, and one daily flight from Osaka (Kansai) and Nagoya (Chubu), respectively. Starting September 15, 2017, JAL will resume nonstop service to Kona on Hawaii Island after a seven-year absence. The daily service from Narita will operate using the airline’s JAL SKY SUITE configured aircraft.

Hawaii Island, also commonly known as the Big Island, is one of the most popular travel destinations and surrounded by a rich natural environment. With this new Kona service, both customers visiting Hawaii for the first time and those who have visited Honolulu previously, will be able to discover more of Hawaii’s countless charms.

The well-received JAL SKY SUITE 767 aircraft operating the Narita = Kona route is fitted with the airline’s latest interior including fully flat “JAL SKY SUITEⅡ”seats in Business Class.


In Economy Class, “JAL SKY WIDER” seats offer increased pitch and a slim-style seatback design resulting in approximately 10 cm (max.) more legroom than the previous seat pitch.


The following plans and schedules are subject to government approval.

Note: Arrival time of JL770 and Departure time of JL779 will be 10 minutes earlier from October 1 through October 28, 2017.

Hawaii Mumps Outbreak Continues – Seven New Cases Confirmed

The Hawaii State Department of Health (DOH) today confirmed six (6) additional cases of Oahu residents with mumps and one additional case of a resident on Kauai bringing the total number of cases in 2017 to 65. The recently confirmed cases include children and adults whose infection is linked to other cases on Oahu. None of the individuals required hospitalization.The department expects to see more cases of mumps in Hawaii as the viral disease is highly contagious and circulating on Oahu. Information on case numbers is updated regularly at…/department-of-health-investigat…/.

Mumps is spread when an infected person coughs or sneezes. The virus is also spread by sharing items such as cups or eating utensils, or by touching contaminated objects or surfaces and then touching the eyes, nose, or mouth.

Prevent the spread of mumps in our community by:

  • Ensuring your family is fully vaccinated with the MMR vaccine. High vaccination coverage helps to limit the spread of mumps. Two doses of the vaccine are 88 percent effective at protecting against mumps and one dose is 78 percent effective. Being fully vaccinated can help protect loved ones, family members, friends, classmates and coworkers.
  • Patients suspected or diagnosed with mumps should self-isolate and avoid going out and exposing others for nine (9) days after onset of parotitis (tender, swollen jaw).
  • People who have been exposed to mumps and are not vaccinated should not attend school, work or travel from day 12 through day 25 after exposure.

MMR vaccine is available at local pharmacies across the state. To locate a vaccinating pharmacy in your community, visit…/vaccines-immun…/vaccine-locators/ or call the Aloha United Way information and referral line at 2-1-1

University of Hawaii Researcher Nationally Honored as Endangered Species Recovery Champion

Nellie Sugii, manager of the UH Harold L. Lyon Arboretum’s Hawaiian Rare Plant Program, has been recognized as a 2016 U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Recovery Champion. This highly prestigious award is given to select U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service staff and partners whose leadership efforts are integral to the recovery of endangered and threatened species of plants and animals. Sugii’s 30 years of experience have led to the development of methods to propagate Hawaiʻi’s most endangered plants via tissue culture and other techniques, many of which may have gone extinct without her efforts.

Nellie Sugii in the Micropropagation Lab.

Although Hawaiʻi makes up only 0.2% of the land mass of the United States, more than quarter of the species on the endangered species list are found only in Hawaiʻi, and most of them are plants. Under Sugii’s leadership, the Hawaiian Rare Plant Program plays an important role in preventing the extinction of Hawaiʻi’s most critically endangered plants, using micropropagation techniques (growing tiny plants in test tubes) as well as seeds collected from these plants for banking.

Many of the plants in the lab are difficult to propagate due to the low viability of the seeds or do not produce seeds at all. The plants sheltered in the lab represent a broad range of Hawaiian species not limited to one region or area in the Hawaiian Islands. Her efforts have led to the propagation of more than 500 of the 1,300 taxa of native Hawaiian plants.


The Hawaiian Rare Plant Program is often the last chance for many of Hawaiʻi’s endangered endemic plants to survive.  The laboratory serves as a rescue, recovery and storage unit for the conservation of critically endangered Hawaiian plants and is the only one of its kind in Hawaiʻi. Since 1993, tens of thousands of native plants have been maintained in the lab collections. Currently, there are about 250 native species in the collection, some of which no longer occur in the wild. HRPP is recognized internationally for its research and leadership in this area.

Asplenium peruvianum var. insulare

Sugii was chosen because of her outstanding dedication to the program and numerous accomplishments. She has maintained and expanded the HRPP on highly competitive grants for nearly 20 years and is a recognized leader in the broader plant conservation community in the Hawaiʻi Rare Plant Restoration Group, Laukahi Plant Conservation Network, and in the International Union for Conservation of Nature Red List Specialist Group. Additionally, she mentors dozens of staff, UH students and volunteers and is known internationally for her expertise in micropropagation of rare species.

More information about this award can be found on the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service website:

More information about the Lyon Arboretum can be found:

Big Island Police Identify Naalehu Traffic Casualty

A 25-year-old Kailua-Kona man was involved in a two-vehicle traffic casualty on Monday morning (May 29) on Highway 11 north of the 69 mile marker in Naalehu, Hawaii.

He has been identified as Eric Figueroa.

Facebook profile picture

Responding to a 9:56 a.m. call, police determined that a 2001 Honda motorcycle operated by Eric Figueroa had been traveling south on Highway 11 when he failed to negotiate a right curve and crossed the center line and struck head on into a 2005 Jeep Wrangler operated by a 52-year-old female that was traveling north on Highway 11.

Following the collision the operator of the Jeep Wrangler was un-injured, but Figueroa was taken to the Kona Community Hospital where he was pronounced dead at 2:52 p.m.

Police believe that speed was a factor in the crash, and an autopsy has been ordered to determine the exact cause of death.

The Traffic Enforcement Unit has initiated a Coroners Inquest investigation and is asking anyone who may have witnessed the accident to contact Officer Christopher Kapua-Allison at 326-4646 ext. 229. Tipsters who prefer to remain anonymous may call Crime Stoppers at 961-8300 in Hilo.

This is the 16th traffic fatality this year compared to ten at this time last year.

Big Island Police Investigating Theft From Zipline Company

Hawaiʻi Island police are investigating a burglary which occurred sometime between (May 28 and May 29) at Umauma Zipline in Ninole.

Zipline 2 at Umauma Zipline Experience

Suspects broke into the warehouse and removed several items including a 2017 Kawasaki Mule 6-person ATV. The value of the items taken is estimated at $29,895.

Police ask any one having information about this case to call the Police Department’s non-emergency line at 935-3311 or contact Officer James Pacheco at

Tipsters who prefer to remain anonymous may call the island-wide Crime Stoppers number at 961-8300 and may be eligible for a reward up to $1,000. Crime Stoppers is a volunteer program run by ordinary citizens who want to keep their community safe. Crime Stoppers does not record calls or subscrib e to caller ID. All Crime Stoppers information is kept confidential.

Commentary: Councilwoman Ruggles “Call to Action” on Gas Tax Increases

Help to protect Puna and low-middle income families from having to pay more at the pump.

Mayor Kim is proposing a 261% increase to the fuel tax over the next 2 years. Fuel taxes are an especially regressive type of tax and will disproportionately affect Puna residents. We need to explore other options for raising revenue, and need the public to have their voices heard.

Details: Tomorrow evening, May 31st at 5 pm  at the Hilo Council Chambers (25 Aupuni st.) the County Council will consider this increase, and you can testify from any satellite council locations as well, including the Pahoa Neighborhood facility (15-2710 Kauhale Street Pāhoa). The proposal will double fuel taxes from 8.8 cents per gallon to 19 cents beginning July, and then increase it to 23 cents by 2019.

Why I am Opposed to Increasing the Fuel Tax:

1) Fuel tax is regressive:
If the entire population pays the same rate of taxes and there are no exemptions or tax credits, then residents of  a lower socio-economic status are, by default, paying a higher percentage of their income towards that tax than individuals earning a higher income. Thus, a family of 4 living on $30k annually will be more affected by a raise than a family of 4 living on $200k annually.

2) Puna Residents will be disproportionately burdened:
We will be disproportionately burdened because we will be paying a greater percentage in fuel taxes while simultaneously receiving the least benefit from the tax:

A. Puna has the highest  percentage of people living below the federal poverty level in the state of Hawaii. Thus, more people in Puna will be negatively affected by this regressive tax than people in other districts.

B. The majority of Puna residents must drive long distances for food, work, college, and doctor’s appointments, etc. On average, Puna residents are more than likely driving further on a daily basis then residents of other districts which means that they will pay a higher percentage of the County’s total fuel tax revenue than residents of other districts.

C. As of now, fuel tax revenue can only be spent on County owned roads. The majority of Puna’s roads are considered private which means that fuel tax revenue cannot be used to improve or maintain the substandard subdivision roads of Puna.

D. Because the distribution of fuel taxes is based on the miles of county road in each district and most of Puna’s roads are private, there is a correlation that while we may drive much more than Hilo residents, we have less county roads, and are therefore receiving less benefit than residents in Hilo are. Based on the distribution formula we are likely paying a higher percentage than are receiving in benefit.

Councilwoman Jen Ruggles

Update on East Side Saddle Road Construction

This is the final phase to reconstruct the east side of the Saddle Road. The project will follow the existing horizontal alignment from milepost 11 to 8.5, then, diverges southward from the existing road until connecting up with the Puainako Street Extension at approximately milepost 5.3. The roadway width will be upgraded to two 12-foot travel lanes with 8-foot shoulders and also include a climbing lane for most of the length of the project.

6/1/17 UPDATE:

Operations between mile markers 8.5 and 11.5 consist of aggregate base, asphalt paving, and shoulder/ditch reconditioning.

  • Aggregate Base – 100% of the aggregate base has been placed for this section (approx. 50% of total project quantity).
  • Asphalt Paving – Approximately 9,500 tons of asphalt have been placed to date. This is approximately 60% of the quantity for the bottom lift (3”) within this section. It is estimated that the bottom lift of asphalt will be completed by the 1st week of May.

Operations within the new alignment (mile markers 5.5 – 8.5) include embankment construction, ash platforms, precast concrete box culverts, concrete headwalls/wingwalls for culverts, riprap ditches and sediment basins, and rock crushing.

  • Precast Concrete Box Culverts – All box culverts have been placed.

Traffic Management:

No changes. As construction operations take place between mile marker 8.5 – 11.5, work may require single-lane, one-way travel in areas where the operation abuts the traveled way. Delays up to 15 minutes may be instituted from 6:00am – 6:00pm. A pilot car will be utilized in instances where operations span multiple work zones or as conditions require to meet safety needs. Weekend/holiday grading operations may be required to improve conditions of unpaved diversions.

UH Hilo Announces 2016-17 Ka Lama Ku Student Leadership Awards

The University of Hawaiʻi at Hilo Campus Center Student Leadership Program recently presented Ka Lama Ku Student Leadership Recognition awards and certificates to individuals and student organizations for their contributions to UH Hilo and the community during the 2016-17 school year.

The Ka Lama Ku Umeke Awards and a Ka Lama Ku Plaque Award were
presented to:

  • Alaka`i Award–Leadership: Rebekah Loving (Mathematics)
  • `Ike Pāpālua Award-To Have the Gift of Vision: Elise Inouye
    (Communication and Gender and Women’s Studies)
  • Laulima Award – No Task is Too Big When Done by All: Justin Araki-Kwee (Computer Science and Japanese Studies)
  • Ka Lama Ku Koa Plaque Award: Alexandra Huizar (Business Administration)

Two student organizations were recognized with a Ka Lama Ku Leadership
Plaque for their contributions to UH Hilo and Hawai’i Island communities:

  • `Ike Pāpālua Award Plaque- To Have the Gift of Vision: Colleges Against Cancer (Alexandra Huizar, Brittney Luna, Ashley Maldonado, Sarah Kapalihiwa Bilyeu, Kash Laeda, Ali Nakata, Brooke Higa, Kimi Taguchi, Norie Anne Rosal Calit, Jade Wong, Misty Figuera, Jualin Sable Guting, Ruby Ann Sales, Ellie-Jean Kalawe, James Drescher, Sheryl Cariaga, Jayahmie Drio, Shaylyn Fujii, Erin McClure and Stacy Mae Gelacio)
  • Ka Lama Ku Hui Koa Award Plaque- Exemplifies the five values of Ka Lama Ku: Nā Haumāna Huaka`i i Kaho`olawe (Sarah Kapalihiwa Bilyeu, Sophie Kaleimomi Dolera, Joshua No`eau Kalima, Alana Kanahele, Sheena Kau`i Lopes, Aaron Kahea Morton, Isaac Ku`uiponohea Pang, Ulupuamahinamaikalani Peleiholani-Blankenfeld and Kiliona Young)

The Ka Lama Ku Certificate of Leadership was presented to individual students
and organizations in the following categories:

  • Alaka`i Certificate – Leadership: Kalaiakea Blakemore (Art)
  • Kuleana Certificate – We are Accountable and Responsible: Bennjamin P Siemers (Kinesiology Education) and the 2016-17 Psychology and Kinesiology and Exercise Science Peer Advising Team (Alia Alvarez, Cheyrub Cabarloc, Zach Gorski, Keian Shon, Julie Tom, Leahi Akao, Chelsea Mitsuda, Froile Queja, Kaylee Rapoza, Bennjamin Siemers, Roget Chan, Jamie Ouye and Gabriella Sanchez)
  • `Ike Pāpālua Certificate – To Have the Gift of Vision: Lara Hughes (Business Administration)
  • Mālama `Āina Certificate – Taking Care of the Land and Environment: Tropical Conservation Biology and Environmental Science (Erin Busch, Keolohilani H Lopes Jr., Kailey Pascoe, Rose Hart and Jessica Kirkpatrick)
  • Mālama `Ohana Certificate – Taking Care of Our Families: Kanani Daley (Art)

The Ka Lama Ku Student Leadership Recognition Awards are sponsored by the UH Hilo Campus Center Fee Board, the Ka Lama Ku Student Advisory Council, the Student Activities Council, University Radio Hilo and Vulcan Video Productions, Ke Kalahea, and the Division of Student Affairs.

UH Hilo College of Arts and Sciences Dean’s List, Spring 2017

The following students in the University of Hawaiʻi at Hilo College of Arts and Sciences received Dean’s List recognition for spring 2017:

Paige Aamoth, Eva Abraham, Jozie Acasio, Taylor Acheson, Kendra Adams, Clifford Agcaoili, Jaster Agcaoili, Keinan Agonias, Brandon Aguiar, Breanna Aguiar, Brandon Ajari, Rhonda Akano, Leahi Akao, Eric Alabanza, Jeannelle Alejo, Marife Allen, John Alokoa, Sylvia Amaral Arquitola, Brian Anderson, Kaleigh Anderson, Kinsley Anderson, Harrison Andina, Jenna Andre, Dwayne Anefal, Nicole Antonio,

Zion Apao, Ralph Aquino, Kathleen Aragon, David Arakawa, Justin Araki-Kwee, Tearina Asiata, Nicholas Asuncion, Braxston Bailey, Sharlene Bala, Kellsie Ballesteros, Sage Barcia, Kaitlin Barcoma, Ashley Barhite, Rachel Barletta, Reagan Barnhart, Joshua Bass, Natalie Baus, Crystal-lynn Baysa, Meyer Beckner, Chase Benbow, Eunice Bernal, Angelica Berson, Jahnu Best, Isabella Beuckens,

Kateleen C. Bio, Victoria Birrenbach, Kalaiakea Blakemore, Casey Blanchette, Chloe’ Blandino, Chelsea Blaquera, Zachary Block, Hannah Blue, Chad Booth, Jennifer Bragg, Andre Brouillette, Matthew Brown, Jennifer Bruce, Rachel Bruck, Kailah Buchanan, Amberly Buer, Malia Byram, Sydney Cabanas, Cheyrub Cabarloc, Jerold A. Cabel, Alexis Cabrera, Leischene Calingangan, Ryley Callaghan, Litah Campbell,

Amanda Canda, Kirsten Cannoles, Jessicamae Caravalho, Renee Carlson, Livia Carr, Nicholas Carrion, Anne Carsey, Briauna Carter, Micah Carter, Cjay Carvalho, Kyla-Jo Carvalho, Malia Case, Gisele Cassarotti Prescott, Genier M. Cayabyab, Kahana Cazimero, Talia Ceja, Allison Chai, Jennifer Chai, Justin Chandler, Andy Chang, Vincent Chang, Royce Chee, Pono Christianson, Victor Ciaramitaro, Kayla Clarke,

Ciera Cline, Ramzen Coakley, Zoe Coffman, Michael Coombs, Elyse Cote, Keri Coughlin, Monica L. Covarrubio, Seneca Cox, Brenna Cranswick, Tifaine Crivello, Trixie A. Croad, Cheyana Crossman, Angela Cruz, Kawelina Cruz, Patricia L. Cubangbang, Ramon Cubangbang, Caitlin Cullen, Claire Curley, Kendrick J. Dalmacio, Crystal Dasalla, Uilani Dasalla, Stephanie Dawrs, Tatiana De La Cruz,

Emily De Wulf, DaShon Dean, Ersa DeBrum, Kaylee Decambra, Edwina Degrood, Marissa Dellomo, Carey Demapan, Tyler DeNardo, Billi Derleth, Ileana Derouin-Loando, Ty Desa, Holly Diop, Savannah Directo, Lael Dobson, Kanoelani Dodd, Danielle Dodge, Lorelei M. Domingo, Princess Dianne Domingo, Joctan Dos Reis Lopes, Sadie Dossett, Jordan Drewer, Jennifer Eastin, Caili Ebaniz, Bryana-Marie Ebbers, Raelyn Eckert, Jamie Economy, Jon Ehrenberg, Kenji Emerson,

Kristel Emerson, Tiffany Erickson, Duke Escobar, Raynell Espaniola, Raeoirasor L. Espejo, Charlotte F. Esquida, Herbert Estes, Hannah Estrada, Starlyne Estrada, Mackay Eyster, Jade Farmer, Sheilla M. Felipe, Sarah Ferguson, Sharrylei Fernandez, Misty Figueira, David Finley, Caitlin Fisher, Rachel Fisher, Caralyn Fitzpatrick, Kelsey Foreman-Bunting, Mary Frame, Heidi Franz, Martabella Freedman, Silmai U. Fritz, Brittany Fuemmeler, Shaylyn Fujii, Maia Furer, Trent Furuta, Dylan Gable,

Alliya Gabriel, Dillon-Jon Gabriel, Maikai Gahan, Kai A. Gaitley, Nicholas Galliani, Gerenel Galvez, Cheryl L. Ganitano, April Gaoiran, Zachary Geisterfer, Jan Genovia, Noelani Gonzalez-Villanueva, Maya Goodoni, Alec Goodson, Rachel Gorenflo, Beverly A. Gorospe, Lila Gourd, Marc D. Grande, Raymond Greene, Piper Greenwood, Rachel A. Greer-Smith, Chrisovolandou Gronowski, Rihei Grothmann, Courtney Guirao,

Basu Guragain, Shirley Guzman, Ariel Halemano, Karise Hallsten, Quinn Hamamoto, Carli Hand, Koko Hanno, Ryan Hanoa, Shane Harrison, Bridge Hartman, Stephen Hasegawa, Dakota Helfrich, Tessa Henderson, Brad Higa, Brooke Higa, Kristie Hirai, Tiana Honda, Lauren Hong, Alena Hookano, Kainoa Howard, Kaitlyn Howe, Karlie Howe, Cooper Howlett, Sandra Huang, ZhiLing Huang,

Adrian Huff, Brianne Huggins, Nyree Hulme, Katya Hutchinson, Kimberly Hutchinson, Mi Huynh, Thien Huynh, Pomaikai Iaea, Laura Ibbotson, Andi Igawa, Marina Ignacio, Yukako Iha, Julia Ingledue, Austin Inouye, Elise Inouye, Courtney Ip, Joanne Isabella, Kristen Ishii, Brian Ishola, Daylen Ita, Miranda Jeffcoat, Kahele Joaquin, Beth Johnson, Cassandra Jones, Kailani Jones, Kyle Jones, Mikayla Jones,

Jamie Josephson, Kiilani Judd, Godfrey Julian, Polanimakamae Kahakalau, Kelii Kailipaka, Nainoa Kalaukoa, Brooke Kamahiai, Shaniya Kamakea-Wong, Keiki O Namahiai Kanahele-Santos, Anri Kasuga, Hokuto Kawashima, Emma Khachikian, Reyn Kihara, Mary L. Kimura, Joshua Kitagawa, Zena Kiyota, Casey Koi, Kamrie Koi, Rochelle Koi, Emilee Kojiro, Hyesun Kong, Krystle Koshiyama, Lisa Kosilla,

Britni Kualii, Kealiiahonui Kuikahi, John Kuroda, Mia Lamirand, Brandon Lau, Luana Lavatai, Joshua Lawcock, Jesse Leavitt, Laurel Ledward, Da Hai Lee, Robert Lee, John Leonard, Nathaniel Letro, Stephanie Letro, Rose Letuli, Shalyn Lewis, Braysen Libed, Cheryll Ligohr, Lee Linneman, Yan Liu, Kaila Lizama, Emerson J. Llaguno, Shaneese Longboy, Sheena Lopes, Emma Lorenz, Devynn Louie,

Kristi Lovell, Noelle Lovesy, Rebekah Loving, Jordana Lum, Brittany Luna, Susanne Lyle, Sharlene Macasieb, Omar Machado, Laurena Mack, Taylor-Keahi Macomber-Cobile, Taylor Madrid, Brandon Mahle, Jewel M. Malapitan, Ashley Maldonado, Michael Mandaquit, Elaine Manicke, Shelby Marhoefer, Danielle Marrufo, Hannah Marshal, Dario Martin, Katherine Martinez, Jaymie Masuda, Issha Mata, Abcde Matias, Kelley Matsumoto, Aspen Mauch, JoeAnna McDonald, Danielle McDowell,

Adam McGhee, Jared McLean, Heidi Medeiros, Lokella K. Medeiros, James Melcher, Luana Mendiola-Smith, Georgette Mercado, Anna B. Mikkelsen, Jordan Millwood, Zayin Minia, Jordan Mirels, Chelsea Mitsuda, James Miura, Kelsy Miyake-Kamahele, So Miyazawa, Melissa Mizuguchi, Melissa Moats, Sharyse Molina, Brendan Moore, Shawn Mori, Trevor Morison, Juliann Morris, Kialoa Mossman, Shane-Earl Naeole,

Amber Nagata, Tori Nakagawa, Blayne Nakasone Sakata, Sheena Nakata, Kirstie Naone, Brandon Neal, Christopher Nelson, Cameron Nicholson, Christine Nicolas, Crystal O’Brien, Nai‘a Odachi, Amy Odaira, Morgan Olson, Rachel Omori, Lorelei T. Padasdao, Matthew Paio, Mariah Paiste, Nathan Pallett, Isaac Pang, Maria R. Paragas, Tinzin Pasang, Shaelynn Pasco, Taylor Patrick, Tyson Pavao, Joel Paye,

Leomanaolamaikalani Peleiholani Blankenfeld, Christina Penney, Josefina M. Pereira, Douglas Phillips, Michelle Phillips, Eiesha Price, Michelle Proue, Ashley Pugh, Jasmin M. Quiamas, Natalie Quinajon, Sheri Quon, Tom C. Rafanan, Nicole Ramirez, Skye Rances, Kaydee Rapozo, James Reagan, Stacey Reed, Karl Reid, Samantha Reis, James C. Remengesau, Sharnelle Renti Cruz, Chelsea Requelman,

Manuelito K. Rey, Emily Risley, Anne Rivera, Haylee Roberts, Kyra Robinson, Saysha Rodero, Nikola Rodriguez, Ashley Romero, Norie-Anne Rosal Calit, Michaella Rosales, Nickolas Rosenberg, Hannah Rosenow, Robin Rudolph, Matthew Ruiz, David Russell, Nina Sabahi, Josiane Saccu, Melanie Sacro, Micheal A. Sagun, Michelle Sahagun, Ilysia S. Sana, Jacob Sands, Kayela Santiago, Shelbi Santiago,

Ryan T. Sasaki, Jacey Savage, Blessing Savusa, Steven Sayers, Alexa Schaefer, Kimberly Schmelz, Dehrich Schmidt-Chya, Stefanie Sciacca, Artem Sergeyev, Seth Shaikh, Ashley-Ann Shaw, Laura Shepherd, Leah Sheppard, Jessie C. E. Sheridan, Albert Shim, Jaci Shinoda, Keani Shirai, Chela Shiroma, Spencer Shiroma, Keian Shon, Sabrina Shores, Ian Shortridge, Heather Simon, Emma D. Sinclair,

Solomon Singer, Hazel F. Sivila, Alexa Smiley, Clara Smith, James Smith, Nicole Smith, Kiana Soloria, Krismon Sotiangco, Kalena Spinola, Kimberlee Staats, Ashlin Stahlberg, Edwin Stanberry, Maria Steadmon, Kyle Steckler, Angelica Steele, Phillip Steering, Justine Stensby, Marguerite Stith, Deneese Stone, Jeremiah Storie, Oliver M. Strachan, Tiffany Stranathan, Marley Strand-Nicolaisen, Jamie Sugai, Eve Sullivan, Kylee Sullivan, Tahigwa Summers, Taliesin Sumner, Tevis Swain,

Royden-Glen Tagalicud, Irie Taguchi, Ryan Taifane, Peniamina Taii, Melia Takakusagi, Nicholas Takaoka, Sophia Tang, Morgan Tate, Trent Terada, Heaven Tharp, Brittany Theilen, Avery Thompson, Kori Todd, Jodie Tokihiro, Julie Tom, Jeffrey Tomas, Kaycie Tomei, Brandon Tomota, Tiana Toyooka, Reynell Transfiguracion, Taylor Traub, Dominick Trevino, Lavin Uehara, Mary-Fem Urena,

Kyle J. Uson, Victoria Uthman, Nicolas Vanderzyl, Molly Verseput, Bernard-Benjamin Villa, Aaron Viluan, Fred Visaya, Leilani VisikoKnox-Johnson, Ashley Vongsy, Cecile Vulliet, Shayla Waiki, Amirah Waite, Jane Walsh, HeNaniNoOeKaWahineUioIkePono Wandasan, Kenton Wandasan, Vernon Warnock, Sondra Warren, Valerie K. Wasser, Tino Wells, Candace Wharton,

Zoe Whitney, Brian Wild, Jade Wong, Tiana Wong, Sarah Wottlin, Christopher Wung, Linda Xiong, Lisamarie Yagruw, Yuto Yamauchi, Jia Hao Yao, Phillip Yawata, Kanani Yockman, Kotaro Yogi, Ivana Yoon, Mari Yoshida, Deanna Young, Tyler Young, Jenna Yugawa, Adrianna Zablan, Luana Zablan, Tahiya Zaman, Turfa Zaman, Tabetha Zapata-Mitz, Kaimalie Zirker, and Gregory Zukeran.

Single-Vehicle Accident Leaves One Dead, Two Injured in Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park

One man is dead and two others are seriously injured following a single-vehicle roll-over accident that occurred Sun., May 28 at 8:58 p.m. near the 33-mile marker on Hwy. 11 in Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park.

The vehicle, a white Toyota Tacoma truck, was traveling in the Ka‘ū-bound lane when it rolled over and ejected all three occupants. A 48-year-old male passenger was found pinned beneath the truck and pronounced dead on the scene by Hawai‘i County Fire Department medics.

The 43-year-old male driver, a Pāhoa resident, was placed under arrest for suspicion of driving under the influence of alcohol. He was transported by ambulance to Hilo Medical Center for further evaluation, and escorted by National Park law enforcement personnel. The third occupant, a 53-year-old male, was also transported to Hilo Medical Center for treatment.

One lane of Highway 11 remained open during the accident scene investigation, and both lanes were open and flowing freely early Monday morning. Names are being withheld pending notification of next of kin, and further investigation.

This is the second fatal traffic accident in the park this year.

Anyone with information regarding this accident can call Park Dispatch at (808) 985-6170.

Hawaii Farms Count! 2017 Census of Agriculture

The Census of Agriculture is coming in December and to prepare, the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS) will visit Hawaii farm and ranch properties now through the end of June. The agency will conduct an area survey across Hawaii to determine crop acreage and livestock inventories for 2017 to make sure every farm is counted for the Census of Agriculture later this year.

“When farmers and ranchers participate in the area survey in May and June, they provide essential information that helps us determine the prospective production and supply of major commodities in Hawaii for the 2017 crop year,” said Kathy King, Hawaii State Statistician. This year, the area survey is especially important because it will ensure there is coverage of every farm for the Census of Agriculture. King added, “With the information from the area survey in Hawaii, we will have the most accurate and reliable data in the Census of Agriculture, covering key demographics, crop diversity, and value of production.”

For the area survey, agency representatives visit randomly selected tracts of land and interview the operators of any farm or ranch on that land. Growers provide information on their crop acreage, farm demographics, livestock inventory, and value of sales. King emphasized, “Everyone involved in Hawaii agriculture looks forward to the Census of Agriculture data, which provides the complete picture of farming and ranching in our state. With everyone participating in this area survey, we will have top quality data for the Census of Agriculture.”

Farmers can be assured all individual information provided to NASS is confidential and only used for statistical purposes as required by law.  For more information on NASS surveys and reports in Hawaii, please give Kathy King a call at the NASS Pacific Region-Hawaii Field Office at 1-808-522-8080. All reports are available on the NASS website: