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The Honolulu Advertiser
Posted on: Thursday, April 20, 2006

Potholes still need patching

By Robbie Dingeman
Advertiser Columnist

Q. The state just finished repaving Pali Highway between Waokanaka and Wyllie streets. Just above that, drivers daily dodge an area where several large chunks of the road in the left lane peeled off. So, why didn't the state repave that stretch of Pali when they had all the road-fixing gear there?

A. Repairs are scheduled to start next week, said state Transportation Department spokesman Scott Ishikawa.

"Our crews will patch potholes along that stretch of Pali Highway during the week of April 24," he said.

Ishikawa said the heavy rains delayed the Pali/Waokanaka work and stretched it out to nearly three weeks. "Instead of waiting for the rains to eventually stop in that area, the contractor moved on to other places on the repaving schedule that were drier, such as Likelike Highway in Kalihi Valley," Ishikawa said.

He said the state plans to use the same "short-stretch" repaving contract to hit the bad patches on Kalaniana'ole Highway in Waimanalo and Kamehameha Highway through 'Aiea mentioned in last week's column.

Q. I saw in your column that the state inspects the Wilson Tunnel for water leaks and wonder if the Pali Tunnels also are inspected? And how often?

A. Inspections are done during the semiannual cleaning and maintenance of the Pali Tunnels when the state closes them down for the weekend to do the work. That was last done Feb. 25 and 26, Ishikawa said. No leaks were found in the Pali Tunnels, he said, which are much shorter than the other trans-Ko'olau tunnels.

The two Pali Tunnels in each direction are about 1,000 feet and 500 feet in length. The Wilson Tunnels are 2,775 feet long in the town-bound direction and 2,813 feet long in the Kane'ohe-bound direction. The H-3 tunnels are 4,890 feet long in the Honolulu-bound direction and 5,165 feet long in the Kane'ohe-bound direction.

Q. I saw a police officer go to a neighbor's house, knock, not get an answer and then go through the mailbox. I thought it was a federal offense to go through someone's mail. What is the law?

A. According to U.S. Postal Service spokesman Duke Gonzales, the Honolulu Postal Inspection Service office said "it is permissible for police officers in the course of their official duties to open unlocked mailboxes and review the contents of those mailboxes."

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