State / In Brief

The Associated Press

Flight returns for emergency landing

HONOLULU — A Southwest Airlines flight from Honolulu bound for Oakland, Calif., made an emergency landing in Hawaii after the captain heard strange noises about 20 minutes after taking off on Christmas Day.

Southwest Flight 1278 landed without further incident at 3:11 p.m. Friday, according to the Federal Aviation Administration.

There were five crewmembers and 19 passengers on the flight, KHON-TV reported. No injuries were known to have occurred.

The television station reported that the captain of the flight decided to turn it back toward Hawaii in an abundance of caution and to allow mechanics to inspect the windshield within the cockpit where the noises were coming from. The station also reported that no mechanical issues were detected after inspection.

The flight took off again on a different airplane and arrived in Oakland about three hours behind schedule.

Airport staff ordered pizza for the passengers while they were stuck in Honolulu to help with the delay.


First responders get vaccinated

HONOLULU — Roughly 20 percent of Honolulu’s 4,500 first responders have received the Moderna coronavirus vaccine, city officials said.

Hiro Toiya, the city’s emergency management director, said that 936 first responders received their shots Tuesday and Wednesday. Honolulu Police Department officers represented 649 of the vaccines, 173 vaccines were given to firefighters with the Honolulu Fire Department and 114 vaccines were distributed to paramedics, emergency medical technicians and lifeguards with the Department of Emergency Services.

Between 60 percent to 70 percent of first responders are expected to receive the voluntary coronavirus vaccine, the Honolulu Star-Advertiser reported.

“It’s the best Christmas present we could give to ourselves, to our island, to our state, to our country and to the world and this planet,” Mayor Kirk Caldwell said. “And the City and County of Honolulu has made a commitment to get all of its first responders vaccinated, if they want to be vaccinated.”

Caldwell said he would not receive the vaccine with the state’s first responders. The mayor said he would wait his turn and stand in line with other seniors after his term runs out in a few weeks.

Police Chief Susan Ballard, Fire Chief Manuel Neves and Emergency Services Director Jim Howe were all vaccinated as first responders this week.


EIS posted for new Aloha Stadium

HONOLULU — A new draft environmental impact statement has been released for a potential new Aloha Stadium after current venue officials halted the scheduling of new events.

The posting of the draft statement Wednesday represents a significant step toward constructing a replacement for the 45-year-old stadium, the Honolulu Star-Advertiser reported.

The statement was compiled from a set of studies that considered “archaeological, cultural, flora and fauna, geotechnical, noise, engineering, hazardous materials, traffic, and economic considerations,” according to a statement by the New Aloha Stadium Entertainment District.

A public comment period of 45 days started Wednesday and will expire Feb. 8. After the comment period, adjustments may be made to the final environmental impact statement, which would be sent to Gov. David Ige’s office for approval.

The New Aloha Stadium Entertainment District’s statement said the firm hired to conduct studies for the impact statement did not find any major environmental concerns with the project.

Hawaii has allocated up to $350 million to develop a new Aloha Stadium. The updated stadium would not be ready to use until at least 2023.


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