Lt. Gov. Green worries COVID-19 infections could hit triple digits on Lanai

Updated: Oct. 24, 2020 at 5:24 PM HST
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HONOLULU, Hawaii (HawaiiNewsNow) - In response to the COVID outbreak on Lanai, Maui county set up mass testing on Saturday.

To get a better understanding of how widespread COVID is on the island, officials encouraged many residents to take advantage of the mass testing.

“It was very well organized, it was very well publicized, we had good community meetings to talk about the information and really try to boost the numbers up that could get tested,” said Lisa Grove of Lanai.

“Very efficient, it only took about 45 minutes in a long line,” said Gail Allen of Lanai. “They moved the line very quickly.”

The outbreak on Lanai has raised some concerns.

“It’s been pretty scary you can really feel the fear,” said Amande de Jetley. “We’re really worried about our friends and family who have tested positive, who are awaiting test results.”

Lt. Gov. Josh Green said we could see a big surge on the island.

“I would not be surprised if we see well over a hundred people ultimately positive,” said Green.

With a potential lockdown scheduled on Tuesday, residents like Kathy Carroll said there hasn’t been much panic.

The island was COVID free for nearly 8 months as wearing masks and social distancing has not been an issue.

“I personally don’t see a lot of panic,” said Carroll. “I see people just almost more resolved to beat this and do what they can.”

Because Lanai is one of the state’s most isolated and rural communities, residents immediately worked to gather as many supplies as they could since hearing about the first COVID case.

“I spent yesterday trying to find oximeters because we wanted as many as we can here,” said Grove. “And I finally reached out to friends on the mainland and started a competition to see how many can send small sets of them and I have about 80 on the way here.”

“Hawaii has really come to our aid, Maui Brewing Company just flew their plane over and donated a lot of supplies,” said de Jetley.

Over 500 pounds of cleaning products and masks were donated by the lieutenant governor’s office in partnership with the Taiwanese community and Coast Guard Auxiliary.

“We have folks on Maui, Oahu and on the mainland that have Lanai connections that are doing there all for us,” said Grove. “It’s like we’re getting a big hug and we needed it.”

As of last night, the governor had not signed Maui Mayor Mike Victorino’s request for a Stay At Home Order that would start on Tuesday.

Hawaii News Now reached out for an update but have not heard back.

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