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The Honolulu Advertiser
Posted at 7:22 p.m., Sunday, May 11, 2003

No homes threatened in Kane'ohe brush fire

By Zenaida Serrano Espanol
Advertiser Staff Writer

City and federal firefighters today were battling a brush fire that scorched between five and 10 acres near Marine Corps Base Hawai'i in Kane'ohe.

The fire burned several acres on Kalaheo Hillside next to the H-3 Freeway and about a quarter-mile outside the base's main gate.

While "no homes were threatened," Honolulu Fire Department Capt. Kenison Tejada said, a communications container at the top of a ridge on the hillside suffered slight paint damage from the flames.

Firefighters contained the fire at about 6 p.m. today, Tejada said.

Officials received the first alarm at about 10:22 last night. Ten city and three federal fire companies responded to the scene and contained the fire by about 2:45 a.m. today.

But the brush fire continued to burn and the Honolulu Fire Department returned to the scene at 9:30 this morning with close to 30 personnel and eight units, Tejada said.

"The wind was a challenge," Tejada said.

Four federal fire units, as well as two military helicopters dumping thousands of gallons of water, helped fight the blaze. The Marines also sent a contingent of ground troops to secure perimeters near the H-3 Freeway, Tejada said.

The cause of the fire is unknown, Tejada said.

In June 2001, a large brush fire above the H-3 near the Marine Corps base burned about 30 acres. The H-3 was shut down in both directions as city and federal firefighters tried to bring the blaze under control.

Reach Zenaida Serrano Espanol at zespanol@honoluluadvertiser.com or 535-8174.