Disasters & Accidents

Maui emergency manager resigns over fire handling criticism

Washington, Aug 17 (EFE).- The head of emergency services on the Hawaiian island of Maui resigned Thursday following criticism for the authorities’ response to the fires that have killed at least 111 people.

Maui County confirmed the news on social media and said Herman Andaya’s resignation was due to health reasons, and that he would be replaced as soon as possible.

Andaya defended the decision Wednesday not to use the emergency alert system to notify the population of the fires, saying its purpose is to warn of tsunamis and adding that he did not want to push people to run toward the flames.

Hawaii’s Attorney General Anne Lopez said Thursday that there would be an independent investigation of authorities’ response to the disaster.

American network ABC broadcast an interview with the director of an electrical monitoring company in which the expert said an explosion probably caused by the fall of a tree on a high-voltage cable could be responsible for one of the fires.

United States President Joe Biden will travel Monday to Maui to visit the area most affected by the fires, the deadliest the country has suffered in the last century. EFE


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