At one of the top beaches in the country, no showers or restrooms ― and no timeline for a fix

There’s been no running water for months at a top-ranked beach on Hawaii Island.
Published: Feb. 3, 2023 at 5:56 PM HST|Updated: Feb. 3, 2023 at 8:48 PM HST

HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - There’s been no running water for months at a top-ranked beach on Hawaii Island.

The water at Hapuna Beach State Park was shut off nearly four months ago. Now, beachgoers want to know why it’s taking so long to resolve the problem at a popular beach that attracts hundreds of people a day.

Lousie Knop goes to Hapuna Beach every morning. She is beyond frustrated that there’s been no running water.

“I’m paying my state taxes to go to state parks for use. I mean that is a heavily used beach,” said Knop. “If you ever see it in the morning, I’ve seen people that have walked there for 10 years.”

In 2021, Hapuna Beach was ranked one of the best beaches in the country by Dr. Beach.

But for the last few months, the showers have been closed off the restrooms are locked up.

Instead, there are Porta-potties for use.

Niel Thomas is also a regular at the park and shares the same frustration.

“We’re all paying taxes to maintain our public parks and this is one of the most used public parks and well known parks in the world,” said Thomas. “One would think it would be a priority to get it fixed.”

He’s been going there for the last seven years and said there were already existing issues with the water system.

“I can say that for I don’t know, maybe three, four years, it’s been on again off again, the whole time,” said Thomas.

In December, Big Island DLNR Superintendent David Arnado told a concerned resident in a letter that staff and contractors have tried to fix the issues, but every time it’s fixed another leak appears down the line within seconds or hours.

On Friday, DLNR released the following statement:

“The DLNR Division of State Parks (DSP) is currently researching temporary fixes to the situation and once we have something in place, we will be in a position to talk more about it.”

State Sen. Tim Richards plans to push for an expedited timeline.

“Yes, we have Porta-potties there, that’s fine, that addresses some of it,” said Richards. “But a temporary pipeline is not that difficult to put in so I’ll be pressing to get that done as quickly as possible.”