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New Year’s fire wreaked havoc on neighborhood

On this New Year’s morning about 1 a.m., a fire broke out on Liholiho Street in Wailuku.

The picture in The Maui News shows the burnt remains of a family’s home. One can only suspect that the cause of the fire was from illegal fireworks (aerials) that were seen all over Maui.

This picture cannot come close to conveying the horror, panic and fear that the family (including children) in the house at that time went through.

Screaming and yelling could be heard throughout the neighborhood as the surrounding residents fled their homes, moved cars and poured into the street.

Being several homes away, all we could do was watch in disbelief and pray that everyone got out of the home and were safe. The continual sounds of small explosions and embers flying toward other homes was a concern also.

I cannot imagine what this family and its close neighbors went through that morning. It will stay with them forever.

So please Maui, before you order your illegal fireworks for 4th of July or the next New Year, think about your family going through a traumatic experience such as this.

A heartfelt thank you to the Maui Fire Department and Maui Police that came to the rescue that morning. We rely on them for a very good reason. They save lives!

Janette Paiva

Wailuku

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