What started the Maui Fire? What all we Know about this Fire?

Devastating wildfires on the Hawaiian island of Maui have left dozens dead, thousands displaced, and much of the historic town of Lahaina in ashes.

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Devastating wildfires on the Hawaiian island of Maui have left dozens dead, thousands displaced, and much of the historic town of Lahaina in ashes. As residents return, Hawaii is beginning to grapple with the massive loss from the deadliest US blaze in a century. “It’s been catastrophic,” said Governor Josh Green.

Caution: Graphic Imagery - Amidst the charred remains of vehicles on Front Street in Lahaina, Hawaii, a dog's lifeless form is visible. This scene was captured on Friday, August 11, 2023, in an image taken by Rick Bowmer for the Associated Press.

Many remain missing as frantic searches continue. Large areas lack cell service or electricity. Recovery will be long, officials warned.

On Friday, August 11, 2023, amidst the aftermath of wildfires in Lahaina, Hawaii, an emergency responder diligently conducts a search in a property. This poignant scene is captured in an image by Stephen Lam of the San Francisco Chronicle, as published by the Associated Press.

The fires started earlier this week, fueled by drought and hurricane winds. Officials were surprised by the speed and strength as the blazes spread to populated areas. “We’ve never had a wildfire affect a city like this,” said Green.

In West Maui, Hawaii, motorists patiently await in a traffic queue as law enforcement removes a roadblock. This action grants local residents their initial opportunity to assess the state of their homes following a catastrophic wildfire that ravaged a significant portion of Lahaina town. The poignant moment, captured by Haven Daily for the Associated Press, occurred on Friday, August 11, 2023.

The first major fires appeared after midnight Tuesday. By late morning they had engulfed Lahaina. Winds from Hurricane Dora helped the fire race through the coastal town. Some residents fled into the ocean - the Coast Guard has conducted over a dozen water rescues. By Wednesday morning, the historic town was essentially destroyed.

Strolling amidst the aftermath of a wildfire on Friday, August 11, 2023, in Lahaina, Hawaii, a man navigates through the wreckage. Despite the devastation that unfolded as wildfires engulfed Maui and obliterated a historic town, Hawaii's emergency management records reveal a troubling absence of warning sirens before residents fled for their safety. This moment is captured in an evocative photograph by Rick Bowmer for the Associated Press.

The death toll reached 93 on Sunday and will likely rise as specialized search teams look for survivors and identify victims. "Lahaina is sacred ground right now because our deceased are there," said Police Chief John Pelletier. "We must recover them quickly."

Seated amidst the charred aftermath of a wildfire, a man's emotional response is palpable as he gazes upon the Lahaina historic banyan tree. This poignant scene, captured on Friday, August 11, 2023, in Lahaina, Hawaii, is immortalized in a photograph by Rick Bowmer for the Associated Press.

Firefighting continues as small local crews are joined by national guardsmen and rescue teams. Maui had limited resources, with only 65 firefighters and 13 unsuitable engines. "It's like trying to fight a blowtorch," said Firefighters Association President Bobby Lee. Crews battle flare-ups and search for survivors in ecosystems facing unprecedented wildfire threats. Experts say climate change has exacerbated the fires.

Charred vessels rest in the waters off Lahaina, Hawaii, on Friday, August 11, 2023. The examination of the wildfire's aftermath on Maui Island unveils a landscape of destroyed residences and communities reduced to ashes. This sobering tableau is captured in an image by Rick Bowmer for the Associated Press.

Lahaina, established in the 1700s and once the Hawaiian capital, is decimated. Its leafy, artistic streets are burnt beyond recognition. At least 2,200 buildings, including homes, schools, and places of worship, are damaged or destroyed. Hawaii's oldest house and a 150-year-old banyan tree were damaged. Historic churches and temples are gone.

On Friday, August 11, 2023, a man navigates through the aftermath of a wildfire's destruction in Lahaina, Hawaii. The resilient spirit of the community shines as captured in this photograph by Rick Bowmer for the Associated Press.

Recovery is just beginning. Thousands need housing as tourists evacuate. At shelters, residents compile missing persons lists. With limited communications, the true number of casualties and missing remains unclear.


Summarised from the original article by: TheGuardian.com

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