The same day as four wildfires sparked on Maui, including the Lahaina fire, firefighters were also battling seven hurricane wind-driven fires on Hawaii Island.
Every year recently, major fires have happened: Mana Road in 2021, Leilani in 2022, and the series of fires this year on Aug. 8. The conditions that day were described by Hawaii County Assistant Fire Chief Eric Moller as producing fires “unlike anything our firefighters had ever fought in their careers.”
On Wednesday, for a seventh time, the Waimea Community Association organized a dinner and recognition ceremony for Big Island first responders.
Firefighters from the island’s volunteer teams were singled out. Hawaii Island is the only one in the state with volunteer firefighters to supplement the county’s force. There are 16 active volunteer fire groups on the island.