Thursday, June 20, 2024

Biden will travel to Hawaii to meet fire survivors

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President Joe Biden and First Lady Jill Biden will travel to Hawaii on Monday to survey the damage caused by the devastating wildfires at the Lahaina resort, the White House said.

In addition to local and federal officials, the White House added in a statement that Biden will meet with members of first response teams and survivors who went to the scene.

The death toll from the Hawaii wildfires, the deadliest in more than a century in the United States, has passed 100, according to reports Tuesday. Authorities are continuing to search for victims and have set up a mobile morgue on the island of Maui. .

According to the latest count by the authorities, the death toll rose to 106, of whom only five were identified due to difficulty in identifying the bodies.

Hawaii Governor Surveys Fire Damage

Aid workers sifting through the rubble of the nearly burned-out town of Lahaina with the help of sniffer dogs have covered only about a quarter of the area, with plenty of room to work.

Officials fear a dramatic rise in the death toll, warning it could double.

And hundreds are still missing. As communications are gradually restored on Maui, some residents have been able to locate their relatives.

Searching for bodies in Lahaina, which had a population of 12,000 before the disaster, is a tough job. The fire was so big that it melted metal: more than 2,000 buildings were destroyed and many houses burned to the ground.

Relatives of the missing have been subjected to DNA testing to help identify the bodies.

Fires wreak havoc on the Hawaiian Islands

On Tuesday, staff from the US Department of Health arrived on the island of Maui with a mobile morgue, an AFP photographer said.

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The Maui fire follows other extreme weather events in North America this summer as wildfires continue to spread across Canada.

In Kahului, on the island’s north coast, several chefs prepare 9,000 meals a day, with the help of a large volunteer force.

The governor said authorities intend to secure 2,000 homes in hotel rooms or private residences to house survivors. The program lasts for at least 36 weeks.

Restoration will take a long time. The central government has said that the cost is 5.52 billion dollars.

Rolf Colon
Rolf Colon
"Creator. Award-winning problem solver. Music evangelist. Incurable introvert."

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