Storm gone, now cleanup starts

volunteer Kevin Schmidt
volunteer Kevin Schmidt
Savina Wendin
Savina Wendin

HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - With the storm moved out the Red Cross has moved in, assessing flood damage to private properties.

"We're just doing an initial assessment, report that back to the main office, and then follow-up teams will take it from there," volunteer Kevin Schmidt said.

On the to-do list, a dozen homes on the east side of Oahu, including Savina Wendin's parent's property in Kamiloiki Valley.

"It was a three- to four-foot swell that just worked its way up in the drainage ditch behind our home, and then washed up over the wall and through the house," she said.

The water ruined carpeting and seeped under wood surfaces.

MD Cleaning and Restoration has been swamped with emergency orders to extract floodwater from carpets and floors.

"In many cases the tips and the top of the carpet will feel dry, but the carpet padding is still soaking wet," company microbial investigator Daren Kaneshiro said. "The danger there is that you're going to get a lot of bacteria contamination and mold damage over the course of several days. If you can get in touch with any professional restoration company, please do so if you feel that it's warranted."

The city Department of Facility Maintenance is busy too, filling pot holes and unclogging stream beds plugged by debris. Road maintenance advises people living along streams and drainage ditches to trim tree branches before the next storm.

"They could come down during heavy rainfall events and contribute to the blocking of the storm drains and streams," Tyler Sugihara said.

The Red Cross sent assessment teams island wide to eyeball damage and offer assistance.

"We're each visiting at least six to eight to a dozen residences in different areas," Schmidt said. "Things like food, shelter and clothing. If people are forced to leave their homes or some of their things have been destroyed, then we could help them with those immediate needs."

"They're angels showing up at your home. It was really nice to see that people care," Wendin said.

Red Cross help may be needed again soon with more rain in the forecast.

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