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Small underground fires continue to emerge periodically in Upcountry, Maui : Maui Now


January 12, 2024, 6:23 AM HST

The Maui Fire Department is encouraging the public not to hesitate to call 911 when they see flames, see or smell smoke.

The reminder was issued as numerous hotspots have emerged in the Upcountry area in recent months, that have been smouldering underground since the August wildfires.  

When organic material, heat and oxygen come together, tiny smoldering underground fires continue to burn.

“We are more than happy to come out and investigate the situation, and take the appropriate action,” fire officials said.

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These small hot spots are undetectable until they emerge from underground, producing smoke (or the smell of smoke), flames, and heat at the surface. Most of these hot spots are in or adjacent to the burn scars from this summer’s fires.

Fire officials say the situation becomes more dangerous when yard waste, tree trimmings, mulch and logs are in the area. The Maui Fire Department encourages homeowners to not pile these items within 100 feet of structures. It is preferred that these wastes be taken to an appropriate facility and disposed of that way rather than left on the property.

A list of County of Maui waste disposal facilities can be found here:

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Tips on a variety of safety and fire prevention topics is available on social media sites:

Additional information and tips to prepare your home, property and neighborhood to reduce its susceptibility to wildfire can be found here:

Source: Maui News

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