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Hawaii Tourism Tells Visitors to Keep Away From Maui for ‘days and Weeks Ahead’

A number of wildfires are burning on the island of Maui and Hawaii officials are discouraging travel to the island. 

The Hawaii Tourism Authority released a statement Wednesday that asks anyone planning to visit Maui in the near future to reconsider their travel plans. 

“Visitors who are on non-essential travel are being asked to leave Maui, and non-essential travel to Maui is strongly discouraged at this time,” the agency wrote. “In the days and weeks ahead, our collective resources and attention must be focused on the recovery of residents and communities that were forced to evacuate their homes and businesses.”

The fires have caused evacuations of thousands of residents and visitors, as well as multiple closures of major roadways.

Airlines including United and American have begun to cancel inbound flights to Kahului Airport. According to FlightAware, there have been five canceled flights at the airport.

The most destructive wildfire sparked on Aug. 8 amid Hurricane Dora near the historic town of Lahaina. The town center is on the National Register of Historic Places, recognized for renovated buildings that date back to when Lahaina was the capital of the Kingdom of Hawaii in the 1800s.

“Much of Lahaina on Maui has been destroyed and hundreds of local families have been displaced,” Gov. Josh Green said in a statement.

Source : SFGATE