HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - Flooding from Tropical Storm Darby left a huge mess at Keehi Lagoon, with trash and large debris littering the water and shoreline.
A lot of that trash is now out of the water and on the shoreline ready for pick-up, thanks to canoe paddlers who couldn't wait for help from the city or the state.
Instead of paddling, men and women from the canoe clubs were shoveling and raking debris Wednesday.
"You notice the tide's been carrying all the rubbish, too, so it's an every day thing," said Daniel Sanford, of the Alapahoe Canoe Club.
The cleanup was started without the city or the state's Department of Land and Natural Resources.
"The city says the state, the state says the city," said Oahu Hawaiian Canoe Racing Association president Luana Froiseth. "It got to a point where, OK, for us as paddlers, we need to do something."
The city's Parks and Recreation Department finally delivered two large trash bins to the city park Wednesday. OHCRA said another bin from state Sen. Glenn Wakai would be arriving Thursday.
The DLNR, which said earlier this week that it didn't have the resources to help out, now says it will send staff members to monitor damage to aquatic resources, and to look for large debris in near-shore waters, even though the park is not under the state's jurisdiction.
Meanwhile, OHCRA members voted Wednesday to cancel this weekend's Oahu championships because of the dangers from debris. Board members were disappointed, but said safety was more important.
"Out here might be clean, but in the water might still get debris and dangerous items in there, too," said Sanford.
Some paddlers want something done about the nearby homeless camps, which they blame for some of the debris.
"If the city or the state would band together and basically say, okay, we're going to do a homeless sweep here, together, it would get cleaned up quicker," said Jen Romano of Keola O Ke Kai canoe club.
OHCRA has until Aug. 6 to get Keehi Lagoon ready for the state canoe championships. Some 10,000 participants and spectators are expected for the event.