Floods hit museum garden, sewage systems


POSTED: Friday, December 12, 2008


Hawaii's Plantation Village closed yesterday after Waipahu Stream rushed through the museum's 1.5-acre ethnic garden, destroying rice, taro, fruit trees, lotus roots and other plants and overflowing ponds, said Executive Director Jeffrey Higa.


;[Preview]    Heavy Rain Causes Damage In Waiphau Home  

It was the worst flooding people in Waipahu have ever seen as the heavy rains damaged businesses and homes.


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“;There is nothing there,”; he said, noting the water carried fences, picnic tables and even a trash bin used for green waste. “;Our gardens are pretty much gone.”;


Still, he said the museum would reopen today, when students from Kalihi Kai Elementary are scheduled to tour the village, which includes plantation houses, antiques and relics.

Nearby, the city closed Waipahu Street last night at the Waikele River bridge after the heavy rain damaged and eroded parts of the bridge. The bridge was to be inspected today.

Earlier in the day, an electric pole was leaning over a bridge, and police also shut down part of Waipahu Depot Road when a rock wall became unstable.

In Ewa Beach three homes along Old Fort Weaver Road flooded when a cesspool overflowed in the morning.

“;There was at least eight inches of water,”; said Honolulu Fire Department Capt. Brian Carvalho, carrying a hose to flush mud and waste water from the houses.

Milton Mathias, 51, who rents the lower floor of one of the homes, said he saw water rising in the garage when he went to the kitchen at about 7:15 a.m.

“;The lady across the street said our house was going to get flooded,”; said his wife, Jadelyn. “;As soon as she said that, we grabbed one of the rugs and put it by the door to stop it, but it wouldn't stop. It was rushing in.”;

Their daughter, Keala, who had left for work at 5 a.m., was back from her warehouse job in Mapunapuna three hours later to help clean up and salvage items. The family lost a couch, two queen-size beds, towels and clothing.

Jadelyn Mathias said they would have to find another place to spend the night.

“;It's a health hazard,”; she said.

The city said crews from the Department of Environmental Services responded to overflows at the Wahiawa and Sand Island waste-water treatment plants.

About 226,000 gallons of treated and untreated sewage went into Wahiawa Reservoir. An estimated 10,000 gallons of waste water overflowed from a drain line at the Sand Island facility.

The city said it notified the state Department of Health of both overflows, posted warning signs and collected water samples for testing.