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The Honolulu Advertiser

Posted on: Wednesday, April 25, 2001

Water in South Maui muddied

By Tim Hurley
Advertiser Maui County Bureau

KIHEI, Maui — Work on a transmission line sent sediment-laden water Monday and yesterday to parts of South Maui, generating reports of ruined laundry and restaurants being forced to close temporarily.

The water returned to normal yesterday afternoon, according to the Department of Water Supply, after crews flushed the system by opening up about 20 hydrants along South Kihei Road.

Department spokeswoman Jacky Takakura said the problem was caused Monday afternoon when crews from contractor Hawaiian Dredging Construction Co. were working to tie in a 12-inch water transmission line to an existing line along South Kihei Road between Lipoa Street and Welakahao Road. Sediment got into the system, she said, and it likely disturbed sediment already settled in the pipes.

Tony Roma's restaurant at Kukui Mall closed for dinner Monday night, and the neighboring Subway sandwich shop closed as well. Chuck's Steak House in the Kihei Town Center used bottled water, Takakura said.

Complaints were registered for about a mile along the South Kihei Road corridor from just south of Lipoa Street to Walaka Street.

One man was surprised to be filling his pool with dirty water, while another person reported that a load of laundry was ruined. Sand was reportedly coming out of faucets, she said.

Takakura said claims for compensation for damage caused by the problem may be filed with the Department of Water Supply.