By euronews with EFE/AFP
Published 08/11/2023 – 10:51 am
The severe drought and Hurricane Hans have caused the flames to spread at a faster rate than usual
The old capital of Hawaii, Lahaina, devastated, like a war zone, and dozens of deaths, after the fires that punish the island of Maui.
At the moment, 53 deaths are lamented, but the authorities have already warned that there may be many more.
The US president, Joe Biden, declared a state of emergency and a natural disaster situation, which will allow the release of significant federal aid to finance relief efforts, emergency accommodation and reconstruction.
Biden turned to the people of Hawaii to show their support: “We are working as quickly as possible to fight these fires and evacuate residents and tourists. In the meantime, our prayers are with the people of Hawaii, but not only our prayers, all the resources that we have will be there for them. And we’ve seen, they’ve seen their homes and businesses destroyed, and some have lost loved ones, and it’s not over yet.”
The governor of the state, the Democrat Josh Green, has already warned that “it will take billions of dollars” to rebuild everything that the flames have devastated.
Green added that it could be months before power is restored to some of the areas most devastated by fire.
Thousands of people, who have lost their homes, have had to be evacuated and tourists have been asked to leave the island. The airlines are offering tickets at reduced prices to facilitate departure, while new flights from this tourist island are finalized.
The severe drought that has affected the archipelago in recent months, as well as the strong winds from Hurricane Dora, have caused the flames to spread at a faster speed than usual and will complicate the work of extinction.
According to the authorities, the Lahaina fire is 80% controlled, while another in Pulehu is 70% controlled.
It is probably the “greatest natural disaster” in Hawaiian history.