HONOLULU (KHON2) — Mayor Bissen named Darryl Oliveira as interim Maui Emergency Management administrator on Friday.
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Oliveira spent 31 years in the Hawaii Fire Department, nine of which he was the Chief of HFD. He was also the head of the Hawaii County Civil Defense for three years.
Mayor Bissen said Oliveira will move from Hilo to Maui to head emergency operations.
Oliveira spoke briefly, stating that he arrived on Maui on Wednesday and got dialed in with the operations. He also praised the work of all agencies as well as community groups.
Herman Andaya, the previous administrator, resigned a week after the deadly fires on Maui, citing health reasons.
During a news conference one day before his resignation, Andaya was questioned about why sirens weren’t used during the fires that devastated multiple areas across the island.
Andaya replied that the use of sirens may have caused confusion so they opted for, what Maui officials claim was, the better option of sending alerts to cell phones, TVs and radios.
“Counties in the state of Hawaii will tell you that sirens have not been used for brushfires. It is our practice to use the most effective means of conveying an emergency message to the public during a wildland fire,” said Andaya.
The use of emergency sirens during wildfires is mentioned on county and state emergency websites.
“The all-hazard siren system can be used for a variety of both natural and human-caused events; including tsunamis, hurricanes, … wildfires.”
Mayor Bissen will announce the new interim administrator in a news conference at 3:30 p.m. which will be streamed on KHON2 and in this story.