Tsunami tests new administrations

Governor Abercrombie
Governor Abercrombie
Mayor Peter Carlisle
Mayor Peter Carlisle

By Tim Sakahara - bio | email

HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - This was the first major natural disaster event for Neil Abercrombie as Governor and Peter Carlisle as Mayor.  So how did the political leaders do?

Mayor Carlisle and Governor Abercrombie showed up early and stayed late.  The talked with the experts and said the things leaders should.

"We want to make darn sure people are 100 percent safe," said Mayor Carlisle.

"We are not taking any chances in this state," said Governor Abercrombie.

Abercrombie was at State Civil Defense.  Carlisle went to the City and County Emergency Operating Center where they watched the waves roll in and made the announcements without dropping in on each other.

"I want to make it explicitly clear to everyone in the state the tsunami warning is not over," said Gov. Abercrombie after the first set of waves arrived.

And later...

"We're now satisfied that we're prepared to let people back out on the roads to go home, go to work, whichever they feel like they need to do," said Mayor Carlisle.

So was this a good test for their new administrations?

"I just assume do without this kind of test," said Gov. Abercrombie.  "My honest assessment is all I had to do is watch the operation unfold."

"My job is to listen to the experts. It's not to sit there and start interfering with their abilities. They've been through this far more often than I have," said Carlisle.

As to Hawaii escaping a second tsunami in just over a year without catastrophic consequences.

"I was very pleased to see that it didn't look like there was much damage and there certainly weren't any threats to life that I saw," said Mayor Carlisle.

"We just can be grateful and we can truly say today lucky we live Hawaii. There is no question about that," said Governor Abercrombie.

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