Access to part of Kahakuloa road limited due to rockfall

The state Department of Transportation lifted its access restriction for travel on the main road through rugged northwest Maui on Sunday near noon but will reinstate the access limitations beginning Tuesday.

Rockfalls along the highway led to a section of the road being open only to local residents. Honoapiilani Highway at Fleming Beach, near Mile Marker 31, and Kahekili Highway at Camp Maluhia, both in the Kahakuloa direction, were closed at 7 a.m. but reopened at 11:30 a.m. Sunday due to rockfalls and safety concerns, the department said.

Department crews and a local rockfall contractor inspected the highway between the rockfalls Friday and Saturday at Honokohau Valley at Mile Marker 36.5 and Nakalele Point lighthouse at Mile Marker 41. Other potential rockfall sites also were inspected.

On Tuesday, rock scaling will be performed to remove boulders and rocks loosened from recent heavy rains from the slopes above the highway, the department said. The crews will begin addressing approximately 10 sites starting at Mile Marker 41 and will work toward Lahaina from Tuesday until done.

The work will take place weekdays from 6:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. beginning Tuesday; access will be limited to local residents only during work hours. Intermittent full closures of the highway will be in place as the rocks are knocked down and cleaned from the highway. This will be done in 15-minute intervals, the department said.

Emergency responders will be allowed through the area.

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