Oahu community pleads with city to repair deteriorated guardrail

A Windward Oahu community is calling on the city to repair a crumbling guardrail before a driver ends up plunging into the water.
Published: Aug. 8, 2023 at 5:35 PM HST|Updated: Aug. 8, 2023 at 5:39 PM HST
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HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - A Windward Oahu community is calling on the city to repair a crumbling guardrail before a driver ends up plunging into the water.

It’s located on Kamehameha Highway in Kahaluu between Honekoa and Lulani Street.

There’s no shoulder along the makai side of the narrow two-lane road. The only barrier between drivers and Kaneohe Bay is what’s left of a rusty guardrail that the city’s allowed to disintegrate.

“This doesn’t provide any safety at all,” said Jerry Takesono.

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“It wouldn’t protect a dog if it ran into it.”

For close to 50 years Takesono and his wife, Betsy, have called the community home, saying their mission to get the guardrail fixed started more than five years ago.

Back then, they tried contacting their local representative but say they never got a response.

“Nothing. And I haven’t even seen anybody come out here,” said Jerry Takesono.

HNN Investigates asked the city how often crews inspect the guardrails along Kamehameha Highway and when the last time any type of maintenance had been conducted at that particular site.

Those questions were not answered.

Instead, a spokesperson provided a statement saying,

“The City’s Department of Design and Construction has contracted a consultant to assess the stretch of roadway that you asked about and is in the process of working with the Department of Facility Maintenance repair the guardrail. This segment of Kamehameha Highway has also been integrated into an expansive Rehabilitation of Streets initiative that is currently in the planning and design phase – this comprehensive project will encompass several enhancements of that stretch of roadway, including highway resurfacing and reconstruction, drainage improvements, and the repair or replacement of other guardrails.”

But the city didn’t say when those repairs would begin.

While the Takesonos say they not aware of any recent crashes, the couple confirms there’ve been many close calls. “We’ve had screeching cars. People glancing off the railing,” said Takesono.

They added the need for repairs are urgent saying they hope the city can replace the safety barrier before it’s too late.

If you know of a safety issue regarding a guardrail where you live email: HNNinvestigates@hawaiinewsnow.com. If possible, include a picture.