East Oahu residents still picking up the pieces after damaging floods

Updated: Apr. 22, 2018 at 6:32 PM HST
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( Image: Hawaii News Now )
( Image: Hawaii News Now )

AINA HAINA, OAHU (HawaiiNewsNow) - For the families who live on Papai Street in Aina Haina, every day since last week's rainstorm has been a massive cleanup effort.

Homeowners cleared debris and mud out of their yards and anything they can't salvage out of their homes, and there's still much more to do.

Shauna Touhy and her brother, Peter, have discarded more than they've kept.

"This is what's left of our life, right here, this room in boxes," Shauna Touhy said, gesturing to a small stack of boxes and a few pieces of furniture they were able to save.

Almost everything touched by water and mud had to be tossed.

The Touhy's and their neighbors concluded an exhausting week of clearing and cleaning since the storm hit nine days ago.

"It's just crazy cleaning," Peter Touhy said. "Pictures are stuck together. You throw it away and you're done with that memory. It's kinda sad."

At the Perkins' house, the swimming pool still holds water from the Wailupe Stream that overran their property during the flood on April 13.

The bottom floor of their two-story home needs to be gutted and rebuilt. Dwight Perkins anticipates it could be up to eight months to completely fix the flood damage.

"You can't do it all at once. You have to realize that or else you'll get overwhelmed" he said, taking a break from shoveling dirt from the pool deck.

He said the city and church groups have been by to help.

The Touhy's are just beginning to work out details with their flood insurance carrier.

"We don't know what we're going to do. We even think about maybe enlarging and going up one floor. In case this ever happens again we have an escape route to go to," Peter Touhy said.

If the disaster has a sliver lining, Shauna Touhy said it's brought the neighborhood closer together.

"People who didn't get affected are bringing us water, and whenever they can they come and help us," she said.

Any help is appreciated. The road to recovery is going to be a long one.

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