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Response time varies for abandoned vehicle removal

Here on Maui we see many abandoned vehicles, partly because there is a cost to properly dispose of a vehicle that is beyond repair. Yes, there is the abandoned vehicle program which involves calling the vehicle in, getting it tagged as abandoned and eventually the county gets it picked up using the tow truck contract they have. We also have the See, Click, Fix online reporting system, which is a good program. These work well — sort of.

Lately I have noticed that depending on where the vehicle is, it can take a very long time or a very short time to actually get the vehicle picked up. For example, if the vehicle is in Wailea, Makena or other high-end manicured areas, the response is quick, a few days. However, if the vehicle is in a more normal neighborhood it can take much, much longer. In one specific case, three of the bright orange “abandoned” stickers have weathered off a vehicle on Kaahele Place in Kihei. It has been there for months with no progress.

There seems to be no urgency to getting this unregistered vehicle off the county right of way. Is this a case where the response depends on how upscale the neighborhood is? I think so. We all like to see our streets clean and tidy, no matter where on the economic scale the street is. The system should assist all of us to keep Maui free of these abandoned vehicles.

Stephen Rodgers

Kihei