RVs are legal in isles but state’s parks lack hookups
Are RVs (recreational vehicles) illegal in Hawaii?
I've checked and can find no RV parks on any island, and I can't figure out whom to call for this information. Is there some state law prohibiting them?
Answer: There's no law outlawing RVs, but because there aren't very many of them in Hawaii, you won't find many campgrounds -- and no special RV parks -- to accommodate them.
In fact, they're specifically prohibited in state parks, as well as in Kauai County parks.
"Trailers and RVs are not permitted to park within state parks, which are not equipped to accommodate them with hookups for water, sewage, electricity, etc.," said Deborah Ward, spokeswoman for the state Department of Land and Natural Resources.
Kauai County parks no not allow RVs because they are not equipped to handle vehicles of that size, according to an official with the Kauai Department of Parks and Recreation.
There are two parks on the Garden Island that allow "mobile camping," but that only means you are allowed to sleep in your vehicle. "It's not for mobile homes," we were told.
You are allowed to bring RVs into certain county parks on Oahu, Maui County and on the Big Island, but none of the parks have hookups for RVs.
Parking your RV overnight in a Maui County park parking lot "would not be a permittable use," an official with the Maui County Department of Parks and Recreation said.
However, there are two county parks on Maui and two on Molokai that allow camping. You could park your RVs there if you obtain a camping permit.
RVs are not prohibited from Honolulu County parks, but "they should park in authorized parking spaces, regardless of their purpose," said Lester Chang, director of the Department of Parks and Recreation.
Camping is allowed at certain city parks, by permit only, but "we don't have hookups for RVs," he said.
"In our camp areas, we don't want a lot of cars where people are camping," Chang explained.
Most camp sites are "not suitable for vehicles to drive up. If they are, we would not distinguish the vehicles -- you could be in a truck, a pickup or an RV."
Meanwhile, you are allowed to bring "trailers and other camper units" at designated Hawaii County parks by permit only. They are allowed on "any suitable place other than picnic or lawn areas," and cannot obstruct any road or path or "monopolize any facility intended for the use of all users of the park," according to regulations.
Meanwhile, any trailer or motor home that travels on a public roadway has to be registered; they're treated just like any other motor vehicle.
Beyond the recreational aspects of an RV, living in an RV is prohibited under the city's Land Use Ordinance "in that an RV is not considered a dwelling," said Art Challacombe, spokesman for the city Department of Planning and Permitting.
Got a question or complaint?
Call 529-4773, fax 529-4750, or write to Kokua Line, Honolulu Star-Bulletin, 500 Ala Moana Blvd., No. 7-210, Honolulu 96813. As many as possible will be answered. E-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org
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