‘Everything is destroyed’: Maui residents assess damage after torrential rain

People on Maui were busy Thursday cleaning up after Wednesday’s torrential rain.

There were reports of flooded homes and roads, and localized landslides.

Even a gym was completely flooded out.

“It flooded the lower part of the gym, up to three feet underwater, it was covered. The higher part of the gym, everything was covered with at least a foot of water,” said resident Vernon Patao. “I just hope everyone is safe, and I’m alive, healthy, and well, so all of this flooding at the gym is almost insignificant compared to a bunch of other people’s much more serious issues.”

Sandie Delima says a nearby irrigation ditch overflowed and flooded her Wailuku home.

She and her husband were at work when they got the call. Her husband drove home as fast as he could, and couldn’t believe what he saw.

“The whole yard filled up, water about three and a half to four feet of water in the actual yard,” Delima said.

He made it home just in time to save their two dogs.

“He rushed over there and … the puppy was swimming around trying to figure out what to do,” Delima said. “The older one was just having a hard time, and if my husband didn’t get there in time, she would have drowned.”

He was able to save the pets, but not much else.

“The whole room that I went into was all just flooded, and everything was just floating around, I mean our freezer, our standalone freezer was just floating down the hallway like nobody’s business,” Delima said. “Everything is destroyed. I would say like 80 percent of our things are destroyed.”

Delima says she and her family are staying at their landlord’s home until they can get their insurance figured out.

A family on Maui is trying to pick up the pieces after their home was flooded for the second time in less than a year.

Hinano Nelson’s home in Wailuku was submerged in knee-high water after Wednesday’s rainstorm.

Even sadder, his kids Christmas gifts were destroyed.

As first reported by the Maui News, Nelson and his family have been going through what he described as hell, since heavy rains hit Maui. “Today I did seven dump runs. It’s frustrating you know. It’s easy to see in the pictures but when you come here and actually face something like this it’s a different ballgame.”

Hinano did everything he could, but the flood water was able to make it into every room in his house, ruining nearly everything in the home including the christmas gifts for his 3-year-old son and 5-year-old daughter.

Hinano’s step father Greg Delacruz, who’s the Pastor at the church connected to the home, says this isn’t the first time the home flooded. “So Hinano and his family actually just got done a couple months ago with the renovations from last year. We put new tile and a new bathroom and all kinds of stuff we did the renovation and then it was flooded.”

What was supposed to be a time for celebration, Hinano says turned into a fight to salvage any of the family’s belongings. “Instead of celebrating my son’s third birthday I was down here fighting the flood.”

Hinano adds he’s grateful for the support the community has already shown, helping to clean and scrape mud off the walls. As for his children, he says this is the second year in a row they lost their presents. “My son like superheroes and my daughter she loves Moana that kinds of gifts and love and hugs.”

Pastor Greg says this week’s flooding is the worst he’s ever seen. The church’s 7,000-square-foot basement was also flooded, along with dorms where the church hosts a transitional program for men recently released from jail.

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