WAILUKU - Residents were evacuated Wednesday afternoon from 21 houses at the end of Mokuhau Road in Happy Valley, as police investigated a suspicious package at a residence.
Along with police, the Fire Department's hazardous materials team responded to the back residence at 2275 Mokuhau Road after a resident called police at 12:50 p.m. to report a suspected homemade bomb found in the home. Officials established a 100-yard perimeter around the residence, which is set back from the road on the Wailuku side of the street. As a precaution, at 1:36 p.m., police officers and firefighters began evacuating 36 residents from houses on Mokuhau Road, between its intersection with Hanalei Place and the end of the road.
One resident was taken from her home by wheelchair. Others carried belongings and walked dogs down the street.
Happy Valley residents carry belongings down Mokuhau Road after police evacuated houses from the end of Mokuhau Road to its Hanalei Place intersection Wednesday afternoon. Police closed the section of road while investigating a suspicious package reported at a residence on Mokuhau Road.
The Maui News / LILA FUJIMOTO photo
"It's pretty gnarly," said Tahj Orine, who walked her dog, Bruza, from a friend's house after the evacuation was ordered.
With additional residents expected to be displaced as they returned home from work later in the day, a temporary evacuation center was set up at the old Wailuku gym on Market Street on Wednesday afternoon. The American Red Cross was staffing the center, with transportation available from Mokuhau Park to the center.
An Army Explosive Ordnance Disposal unit from Oahu arrived at the scene around 7:30 p.m. Wednesday to examine and dispose of the suspicious package.