HONOLULU (KHON2) — Thousands of gallons of water flooded a holding area at Daniel K. Inouye International Airport Thursday morning, creating a huge mess.
It happened around 7 a.m. on Thursday in the Neighbor Island Terminal.
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While it was originally stated that airport operations were not impacted, the Department of Transportation (DOT) Spokesperson Jai Cunningham reported that Hawaiian Airlines flights were delayed due to the flooding.
Water also went into the first floor where TSA conducts bag checks. As a result, two bag inspection areas had to be closed down and K-9s were bought in to inspect bags.
Honolulu Airport authorities said an air-condition (AC) line in the Neighbor Island Terminal on the mauka concourse broke, which caused water to flow out of the air condition line by the Starbucks there.
DOT said by 8 p.m., the AC was once again operational.
The area where flooding and repair work was being done was sectioned off and new carpet was being installed as workers tried to repair the broken air condition unit.
A video taken at around 6:30 a.m. showed water pouring from the ceiling of a small side room at the airport. According to one airport official, roughly 40 thousand gallons of water flooded the holding area fronting the coffee shop near the new Mauka wing in Terminal 1.
As soon as it happened, it was all hands on deck.
The soggy carpets were pulled out, large fans were drying out the area and crews worked diligently preparing for new carpets to be brought in.
Before Hawaiian Airlines’ flights were delayed travelers were able to access all the surrounding gates, with a few minor detours.
However, during the time of the incident travelers did have to deal without AC for a while.
Cunningham said the piece just happened to be in the chiller pipe that feeds the cold water up to the air conditioning unit.
At the time, officials did not know how much it would all cost.
“We have an annual maintenance repair fund,” Cunningham explained. “We have about $60 million for normal sort of maintenance. This obviously is not normal maintenance. This is going to be an emergency fix.”
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He said they do prioritize maintenance and repairs of infrastructure and they will be looking into the aging air conditioning system.