HONOLULU – The Hawaii Department of Transportation (HDOT) is continuing to work on the Pali Highway following multiple landslides that prompted the highway to close Monday, Feb. 18, 2019. The Honolulu bound direction is anticipated to be closed 24/7 through Monday, Feb. 25, 2019. HDOT is working to temporarily open the Kailua bound direction from 3 p.m. to 7 p.m. beginning Wednesday, Feb. 20. The area will be monitored during the accessible hours. Emergency vehicles will also be escorted through in the Kailua bound direction.
Multiple landslides occurred in two separate areas over the past 24 hours. One location is in the Kailua bound direction after the second tunnel. The second location is in between the two tunnels and impacted the Honolulu bound direction. Upon further inspection, there are several large boulders, some the size of a vehicle, that are at risk of falling on to the Honolulu bound lanes. The Old Pali Road was also damaged in the landslide sending pieces of concrete down with the slide. The structure sustained significant cracks and damage and must be secured.
Before the Honolulu bound direction can be reopened, HDOT and its crews must stabilize the hillside to prevent additional debris from falling, including from the Old Pali Road. Crews will then finish clearing the debris from the highway itself to clear the large boulders and debris that came to a rest on the roadway.
Honolulu bound traffic is detoured at Castle Junction. Kailua bound traffic is being turned around at Waokanaka Street. In addition, the Pali Lookout will remain closed until further notice. Hikers should avoid the area due to safety concerns and the risk of falling rocks.
The H-3 Freeway, Likelike Highway and Kalanianaole Highway can be used as alternate routes. Motorists are encouraged to check GoAkamai.org or any traffic application they prefer for up to the minute traffic conditions before getting behind the wheel.
HDOT is designing plans for long term landslide mitigation solutions that may be implemented in the area. More details to follow. HDOT thanks the traveling community for its patience as crews work to reopen the highway as safely as possible.
Please courtesy “HDOT” or “Hawaii Department of Transportation” if the photos are published.