Computer issue continues to plague city driver licensing centers; neighbor islands also affected

Due to computer mainframe issues, the city Department of Customer Services has made the decision to partially close the city’s driver licensing centers on Wednesday, June 28.

All driver licensing offices will continue to perform scheduled road tests and walk-ins as appropriate, but all other services will be unavailable.

(Note that the Waianae Driver Licensing Center is only open on Tuesdays and Thursdays. Click here for a complete listing of all driver licensing centers.)

Meanwhile, the nine satellite city halls across Oahu will remain open and provide all services, except driver licensing transactions.

The problem affected driver licensing centers and satellite city halls across Oahu for a second straight day Tuesday, as well as services on the neighbor islands.

Oahu’s five driver licensing centers were unable to process any driver’s licenses or state ID transactions. Satellite city hall locations were also unable to process any driver’s license renewals or duplicates.

Photo: County of Kauai

We learned that the neighbor islands were also affected. Maui County officials reported slow operations due to the computer issue, and Hawaii and Kauai counties suspended services for driver’s licenses and vehicle registrations altogether.

“We regret that services at the driver licensing centers and satellites are affected by this computer issue, and we ask customers for their patience,” said Sheri Kajiwara, director of the city Department of Customer Services.

In order to assist affected drivers, the Kapalama Driver Licensing Office will open on Saturday from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. However, no road tests will be offered.

There will also be a grace period for motor vehicle registrations. The June 30 deadline will be extended to Friday, July 7.

“We understand it’s not people’s fault if they are delayed, so we worked with the state DOT and we got permission to extend the due date for your motor vehicle registration,” Kajiwara said.

Expired driver’s licenses won’t receive any extra grace period, because there’s already one in place. You have 90 days past the expiration date to get it renewed without a penalty fee. Keep in mind, you aren’t allowed to drive with an expired license.

Photo: City and County of Honolulu

The city’s mainframe computers experienced a shutdown Monday morning and processing remained sluggish throughout the rest of the day.

Officials say the problem stemmed from the compatibility between newly installed mainframe hardware and existing software.

According to Department of Information Technology, an unanticipated processing problem occurred when driver licensing and satellite city hall staff logged onto the system Monday morning and traffic on the system increased.

“We had to load some new code, have it conform from the new mainframe to the old software, but we had a problem with that,” explained Keith Ho, the department’s deputy director.

The four driver licensing locations that were open on Monday closed 45 minutes earlier than normal.

All satellites city halls as well as the Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam Motor Vehicle Registration Office remained open to process vehicle registrations. However, vehicle registration processing was still slower than normal, which led to longer wait times for customers.

Additional services at satellite city halls were not affected, including the sale of spay/neuter certificates, dog licensing, Board of Water Supply payments, TheBus pass sales, and disability parking permits.

Photo: County of Hawaii

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