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Lightning strikes spark 350 acre brushfire in Kona Sunday (Aug 19)

By Hawaii 24/7 Staff

Fire/rescue crews responded to 2:04 p.m. alarm Sunday (Aug 19) to a site seven miles up Hokukano Ranch Road in Kealakekua for a brush fire on private ranch land.

Crews arrived to find two moderate sized brush fires that totaled about 50 acres. Light winds caused the fires to merge into one fire. The remote location proved difficult for firefighting efforts due to the lack of radio and phone coverage.

Firefighters had five bulldozers cutting firebreaks, a 6,000-gallon tanker and three 3,000-gallon tankers providing water for ground crews and airdrops by Choppers One and Two.

The fire was declared under control by 8 p.m. with 350 acres burned. Firefighters remained on site overnight to guard against flare-ups, to reinforce firebreaks and to put out any fire jumping a break should the wind increase.

The cause of the fire was caused by lightning strikes according to witnesses.

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