Maui County mayor condemns arsonists as 'idiots'

WAILUKU, Hawaii (AP) - Maui County Mayor Alan Arakawa says arsonists are "burning the assets of our community."

Arakawa is imploring the community to prevent fires and report suspicious activity.

Fire Chief Jeff Murray says it appears a blaze extinguished Monday that burned 87 acres in Kaupo was intentionally set. He says it cost more than $80,000 to fight the fire over nine days.

The Maui News reports the number of brush fire calls in less than seven months this year is approaching 12-month totals for previous years. As of Tuesday, the Fire Department responded to 221 brush fire calls this year. There were 231 for 2011 and 266 in 2010.

Arakawa says it's crazy to think setting fires is a fun thing to do. He calls those people "idiots."

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