21 February, 2024
Maui Wildfire Update: A Thousand Missing in Deadliest Blaze in Over a Century
2 mins read

Maui Wildfire Update: A Thousand Missing in Deadliest Blaze in Over a Century

More than 1,000 people are still missing in Hawaii as rescue teams comb through the rubble left by the deadliest wildfire in over a century to hit the United States.

The wildfires started on Tuesday and spread across several islands, spurred by winds from Hurricane Dora. The fires hit Maui particularly hard, engulfing the historic town of Lahaina in flames on Wednesday. It is believed the fires were caused by a mix of hot and dry conditions. Thousands of people in Maui were forced to evacuate Wednesday morning, with some only given minutes to escape as fires devoured their family homes. Some even jumped into the ocean to flee the inferno

At least 93 people have been confirmed dead as of Sunday morning as firefighters still battle three wildfires on the Hawaiian island. On Saturday, the death toll was at 89, and only two of the dead had been identified because searing flames hot enough to melt metal destroyed the bodies, according to a report from the Associated Press.

The fire destroyed at least 2,200 structures, the majority of which are residential, the AP reported. Lahaina, which was the original capital of the Hawaiian Kingdom, was particularly impacted by the wildfires.

Hawaii Governor Josh Green was certain that the number of fatalities will continue to rise, the AP reported.

“It will certainly be the worst natural disaster that Hawaii ever faced,” he said. “We can only wait and support those who are living. Our focus now is to reunite people when we can and get them housing and get them health care, and then turn to rebuilding.”

Preliminary damage estimates are between $8 and $10 billion, according to MarketWatch on Friday. The report added that the fires have ruined homes and businesses and that the island’s flourishing tourist industry is expected to be impacted.

The fires impacted all living creatures. Hundreds of dogs, cats, and other pets have been injured or separated from their human families in the flames. Many of the lost pets also require critical care for smoke inhalation, local news station WTRF reported on Sunday.

Preliminary damage estimates are between $8 and $10 billion, according to MarketWatch on Friday. The report added that the fires have ruined homes and businesses and that the island’s flourishing tourist industry is expected to be impacted.

The fires impacted all living creatures. Hundreds of dogs, cats and other pets have been injured or separated from their human families in the flames. Many of the lost pets also require critical care for smoke inhalation, local news station WTRF reported on Sunday.