Maui fire: 93 killed as Hawaii governor warns of death toll rise

Maui, Hawaii, Saturday

Ninety three people have been confirmed killed in the Maui fire that razed the historic town of Lahaina , marking the most deadly US fire in a century.

The number of victims could rise ‘’significantly,’’ Hawaii Governor Josh Green warned on Saturday, as forensic work continues to identify the victims.

Hundreds remain unaccounted for while hundreds others fill shelters across Maui after fleeing the flames.

“It’s an impossible day,’’ Mr Green said.

“We can only wait and support those who are living. Our focus now is to reunite people when we can and get them housing and get them health care and then turn to rebuilding.’’

While the wildfires are now largely under control, efforts to fully extinguish them are continuing in parts of the island, including around Lahaina, which has been devastated.

Authorities have focused efforts on combing through what is left on the coastal area of the island using sniffer dogs trained to detect bodies to look for signs of corpses under the rubble.

So far they have covered only 3% of the search area, said a visibly emotional Maui Police Chief John Pelletier.

“You have to do rapid DNA (testing) to identify them, every one of these 89 are John and Jane Doe ( initially unidentified),’’ he said.

“None of us understand the size of this yet.”

Source: BBC

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *