Honolulu Molasses Spill Could Lead to New Laws, Stricter Oversight

Nick Grube/Honolulu Civil Beat

On Saturday, a gaggle of cameramen and reporters boarded a tug boat at Pier 9 behind Aloha Tower to go on a tour of what's being called the largest marine disaster in the state’s history — a massive molasses spill in Honolulu Harbor.

The event was organized by the Hawaii Department of Health and aimed to give the journalists a sense of the magnitude of the disaster as well as clear up any misconceptions about the spill and the subsequent response efforts.

But if there was one takeaway from Saturday’s gathering it's that the state and federal governments need to find a better way to regulate shipments of molasses. Unlike oil or other products, molasses is not considered a hazardous material by oversight agencies.

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