Emergency access into Hanalei to begin this week as crew continue stabilization work

Most dirt and debris has been cleared, but work in the area continues.
Most dirt and debris has been cleared, but work in the area continues.(HDOT)
Updated: Mar. 15, 2021 at 3:48 PM HST
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HANALEI, Hawaii (HawaiiNewsNow) - State transportation officials say they are on track to open one lane of Kuhio Highway into Hanalei for emergency access starting Tuesday.

The highway — which is the only way in and out for Kauai’s North Shore communities — was blocked last week when heavy rain brought down a sizeable chunk of the hillside near Princeville.

Photos show most dirt and debris has been cleared from the road, but there are concerns about the stability of the hillside overall.

In an update Monday, HDOT said crews were installing barriers and a rock fence to try and prevent further landslides for the time being. GPS tools are also being used to provide real-time alerts to officials in case any movement of the slope is detected.

By Tuesday, the state anticipates one lane of alternating traffic will be open for emergency access only. This allows the county to provide critical services, and gives residents the chance to get supplies they need.

Officials anticipate the emergency access lane will be available for about 2 days. They are examining the possibility to provide public access to the area after that period.

Work is ongoing in the area and security checkpoints will be set up on both sides of the impacted area.

Details to allow public access are still in the works.

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