On Tour of Hawaii Tsunami Damage, Abercrombie Finds Good News in Kona
KAILUA-KONA — In his first trip to the neighbor islands since the tsunami ripped through Hawaii early Friday and caused damages estimated to be in the tens of millions of dollars, Gov. Neil Abercrombie got some good news.
Hawaii Department of Land and Natural Resources Director William Aila Jr. informed the governor Tuesday that Kailua Pier was damaged by water pressure from beneath that caused cracks in the surface asphalt but that it was structurally sound and can begin accepting cruise ship visitors.
Abercrombie, Aila and Big Island Mayor Billy Kenoi traveled together through parts of West Hawaii Tuesday. Abercrombie viewed the King Kamehameha Kona Beach Hotel, which has had to shutter its beach-front restaurant but otherwise avoided catastrophic damage. He went to Alii Drive, where he checked out the pier and saw the Kona Inn closed for repairs to tsunami damage. He went to Kealakekua Bay and to Honokahua Marina.
Lastly, he visited the Hawaii County Council at the West Hawaii Civic Center. He and Aila testified at the Committee on Human Services, Social Services and Public Safety.