Report ranks Hawaii near bottom when it comes to highways

By Duane Shimogawa - bio | email

HONOLULU (KHNL) - The 17th annual report on performance of state highway system ranks Hawaii the fourth worst in the country. But the experts who did the study say our problems can be fixed.

The experts say Hawaii's highways need a lot of work, yet they say nothing has changed in years.

"Given that they have quite a big of money relative to the size of the system ought to be performing quite well, but then you look at the system, that's not the case, said Co-Author of the study, David Hartgen.

The "Reason Foundation" completed the study. It's a team of experts that say Hawaii continues to lag behind most states year in and year out. According to the report, Hawaii is spending two to three times more than the national average, yet that same report says its system is performing poorly.

The Department of Transportation officials think otherwise responding to the report in a statement Thursday saying, "The Department has more than doubled its maintenance spending over the last five years. We're focusing on extending the life of our roads."

The study said there are no quick fixes, but it's something the state needs to seriously look into.

"This project is solvable, but it isn't solvable unless they focus in on a goal and try to figure out which action you need to take to achieve that goal," said David Hartgen.

A goal that drives us all to come up with a solution for better highways. The report also ranks Hawaii near the bottom for traffic fatalities.