HONOLULU (KHON2) — In a press conference on Thursday, Mayor Kirk Caldwell announced the closure of all Department of Land and Natural Resources (DLNR) Division of State Parks units on the island of O‘ahu. This means parks will close after midnight tomorrow and remain closed at least until midnight on September 4.
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This announcement follows a string of large, unauthorized gatherings, and violation of social distancing rules.
DLNR announced the closure will include all O‘ahu state parks, waysides, lookouts, scenic shorelines, recreation areas and monuments. The grounds of Iolani Palace will remain closed, but the palace itself will stay open for tours. Camping is suspended as well under the new order.
DLNR Chair Suzanne Case said, “The current surge of COVID-19 cases on O‘ahu requires immediate action for public health and safety. This surge has been attributed to not wearing protective facemasks, being in large social gatherings, and some people simply ignoring the health practices that have been implemented to try and get coronavirus under control.”
State officials add that parks with authorized tenants will remain closed but authorized management will remain on site.
State Parks Administrator Curt Cottrell said, “We have observed an increasing number of people ignoring protocols that have been drilled into our society to protect our collective safety. It is unfortunate at a time when we need access for exercise, health and peace of mind that certain behaviors require rapid and a definitive unilateral action by the City and County of Honolulu and the State of Hawai‘i.”
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