Kokee Road on Kauai reopened, brush fire 100 percent contained

Photo credit: Lorrine Lagoc-Agrade
Photo credit: Lorrine Lagoc-Agrade

The brush fire that broke out at around 7 p.m. Friday, June 5 on Pokii Ridge in Kokee.

DLNR fire crews declared the wild fire on Kauai under 100 percent control at 5 p.m. Thursday after two days of monitoring. It was declared contained on Tuesday. The cause of the fire is still unknown.

As of Sunday afternoon, the Department of Land and Natural Resources said the fire has burned more than 400 acres.

A flareup was reported at 4 p.m. on Sunday, but it posed no threat to structures.

Firefighters from the Waimea, Hanapepe and Kalaheo stations along with Rescue 3, a battalion chief and the prevention captain responded to the fire on Friday. In addition, firefighters from the state Dept. of Land and Natural Resources, Division of Forestry and Wildlife (DOFAW) and the Kauai area forestry manager responded.

At approximately 10 p.m. Friday, a bulldozer was dispatched by DOFAW to cut firebreaks on an old dirt road. This enabled two DOFAW and two Kauai Fire Department trucks to reach the west and north flanks of the fire and begin to battle it. The first responders continued their efforts until approximately 2 a.m. Saturday and then returned to their respective stations.

On Saturday morning, 11 DOFAW firefighters and the Kauai area forestry manager returned to the scene and resumed their firefighting efforts.

Air 1 arrived on scene at 7:30 a.m. to do water drops and three bulldozers and a water tender contracted by DOFAW arrived about an hour later to assist.

According to a preliminary investigation, the fire started on the side of Kokee Road just before the “hairpin turn” roughly one mile up from the base of the roadway. The fire then travelled all the way up to Pokii Ridge where it continues to burn.

The cause of the fire is not known.

A portion of Kokee Road has been reopened. County officials say the road was closed earlier from the Waimea Canyon Drive junction to the Kekaha Road junction due to the fire.

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