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Brush fire 75% contained

A brushfire that began burning Tuesday through Ouli Gulch between Kohala Mountain Road and Kawaihae Road was about 75% contained by Wednesday morning, according to Hawaii County.

The fire started near the 4-mile marker on Kohala Mountain Road and progressed downhill toward Kamuela View Estates and South Kohala View Estates, the county said in a news release.

No evacuations or road closures were necessary as two bulldozers were called in to cut fire breaks.

Seventeen Hawaii Fire Department units responded and worked through the night to contain the fire. Responding units were able to prevent any damage to homes or critical infrastructure.

By lunchtime Wednesday, the fire was 200 acres in size, and was reported to be 75% contained at 11 a.m.

Crews remained on scene at that time, working to put out hot spots in the burn area. HFD Chopper 1 also was on scene working to extinguish hot spots in inaccessible areas.

According to the county, there were no imminent threats to life or property as of Wednesday morning.

A small brushfire north of Hilo also briefly closed one lane of Highway 19 near Alae Cemetery and Honolii Wednesday morning.

A Hawaii Police Department spokeswoman said just before 11 a.m. that the small fire along the shoulder of the roadway had been extinguished.

No cause had been determined at that time.

HFD on Wednesday morning also responded to a vehicle fire at the 13 mile marker of Daniel K. Inouye Highway when a fire engine from the U.S. Army’s Pohakuloa Training Area Fire Department caught fire.

Two companies from Kaumana fire station responded to the 7:53 a.m. alarm.

According to HFD, the first unit was on scene at 8:11 a.m. and found the fire engine about 50% involved in flames. The fire was extinguished without incident using approximately 1,000 gallons of water mixed with Class A foam.

HFD said the fire may have been caused by a possible overheating of the fire engine’s rear brakes.

The fire closed one lane of Daniel K. Inouye Highway for several hours. No injuries were reported.
Source: Hawaii Tribune Herald

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