by: Paul Drewes
(KHNL) - Fast-moving flames on Maui, force fire fighters to airlift a family to safety. The fire's located in the hills above the Puamana subdivision, just mauka of Lahaina. The fire was first reported at noon on Monday.
Officials say flames charred one thousand acres so far.
Not just a family, but over a dozen family members live in a number of houses in the path of this fire. Luckily, they all made it to safety, thanks to an emergency evacuation from above.
The Kapu family is caught in the middle of all the smoke and flames. Early in the day, they tried to protect their homes with what limited water they could supply to prevent the fire from reaching houses in the valley and ridge. But by late in the fight, a helicopter was called in to take them to safety, an emotional evacuation.
"Seeing this wall of fire coming close to everything we built this is our life, this is all that we have. The roads are burnt out, we couldn't get out and there's no way we could evacuate any of our important belongings. My two boys in the helicopter broke down and started crying, I started crying. We could lose our home and everything we worked for." says Ke'eaumoku Kapu. Fire fighters had to clear the family out so helicopters could drop water on the fire from above. Kapu says while his home has been spared so far from the flames, one of his family member's homes burned down in this brushfire.