Parking crackdown, new signs at TMT protest site anger activists

Parking crackdown, new signs at TMT protest site anger activists
DOT installs no parking signs at Mauna Kea. (Source: Kahookahi Kanuha)

HONOLULU, Hawaii (HawaiiNewsNow) - The state Department of Transportation started installing no parking signs along Daniel K. Inouye Highway at Mauna Kea, in a move that’s angering TMT protesters.

The signs are to “ensure safety to the traveling public and deter unpermitted parking along the highway. Police officers will enforce the no parking statue in the areas with the posted signs,” said Hawaii County Police Department and Hawaii State Department of Transportation, in a joint statement.

The statement says protesters were notified prior to the signs being installed so people could move their vehicles.

TMT opponent Kahoʻokahi Kanuha says after the signs went up, citations were given out for various reasons including tires and tinting.

“It definitely seems like a form of harassment though, as they could choose to do this anywhere on island or across the state, but they have chosen to target kiai and the puuhonua for petty things that in another situation or in other areas most likely would not be cited,” he said.

Additional statement released by Major Robert Wagner of Hawaii County Police Department:

“The citations are being issued for anyone traveling on the highway that are violating the traffic code. I am not aware of anyone being cited for parking, or for flags. As for speeding fines, not giving you the speeding as it depends on how fast they are going. But for other common tags officers get, see below. As for towing cars, those would be if cars are being driven and for various reasons have to be towed, they are towed. Such as Aliyah Law, stolen vehicle, etc., we have no exact number on how many vehicles have been towed, but I have been told it has only been a few. Daniel K Highway, is heavily traveled, most of which is a 60 MPM highway, it is about 50 miles long, and it has always been heavily enforced. We do not keep stats as far as the amount of citations issued in that area.”

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