Violet Street resident Allan Fernandez and Councilman Rod Tam inspected the damaged footbridge that spans Kamanaiki Stream in Kalihi Valley on Sunday.

Broken footbridge stirs
concern in Kalihi Valley

Some Kalihi Valley residents are worried that children could fall off a damaged footbridge used as a shortcut to school and a bus stop.

"Sooner or later, someone is going to get hurt if no one fixes it," said Marie Kam, who lives across the wooden bridge and noted that school starts soon.

According to City Councilmember Rod Tam, a runaway vehicle came down Kamanaiki Street, smashed through the wooden railing of the footbridge and fell about 20 feet into the stream. The vehicle took out a large part of the wooden railing, leaving one side of the bridge open.

The wooden footbridge is about 40 feet long and was built over Kamanaiki Stream.

Surrounding residents have been waiting for four months for the bridge to be repaired. But it is unknown who owns it, said a city spokeswoman.

Spokeswoman Carol Costa said properties on each end of the footbridge are privately owned.

City officials are still trying to determine who owns the bridge, Costa said.

Tam said he had placed a request last month with the city administration to have the bridge repaired.

"They haven't done anything," said resident Allan Fernandez, who lives near the bridge. "If they're waiting for someone to get hurt, that's an open invitation."

Barricades with blinking lights were put up on both ends after the accident occurred. But residents and moped riders continue to use the bridge, Fernandez said.

About 50 adults and children walk across the bridge every morning as a shortcut to get to the bus stop on Kalihi Street or to go to Kalihi Uka Elementary School, he added. Moped riders also move the barricades to cross the bridge. Kam said children play on or near the bridge.


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