Red Cross aids family affected by house fire

The American Red Cross is assisting a family of three that lost its Kahului rental home and belongings in a New Year’s Eve fire that officials suspect was caused by fireworks.

Police and fire officials said the investigation of the fire was ongoing Wednesday.

The blaze was reported at 9:34 p.m. Monday at 51 Kono Place. When firefighters arrived on the scene, the 600-square-foot cottage was fully engulfed in flames. It was destroyed, with an estimated cost of $152,000. A neighboring residence under construction also sustained fire damage, assessed at $25,000.

Red Cross volunteers went to the fire scene to ensure that the displaced residents’ immediate needs – such as shelter, food and clothing – were met, officials said.

“Caseworkers will continue to follow up with the family,” a Red Cross announcement said.

Witnesses reported seeing the fire begin on the cottage’s roof and spread downward, which suggested that errant aerial fireworks started the fire on the rooftop.

Aside from the Kahului structure fire, Maui firefighters responded to more than a dozen brush and rubbish fires – most in Monday’s late-evening and Tuesday’s early-morning hours.

The Red Cross encourages all families to make a disaster plan to include evacuation with two different escape routes, a communications plan to help families reconnect after a disaster and a supplies kit readily available for a quick evacuation.

Information on developing a family plan is available online at A brochure may be requested by calling 734-2101.