Waianae non-profit in limbo after damage from toppled trees

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A Waianae non-profit organization was hit especially hard by this week’s strong winds.

The director of Pu’u Kahea says the landscape has forever changed, and he is still waiting to hear back from the insurance company to find out how much it’s going to cost to remove the trees and repair the damage.

Director Jimmy Tucker showed us the destruction caused by the winds including several toppled trees and lots of debris.

“Out of all the trees that fell, I did not hear a single one, and I was outside during all this happening,” he said.

A keawe tree fell onto two buildings, ripping through parts of the roof. A room used as a dorm would have been busy if the tree fell on the weekend.

“The number-one thing that comes to mind is thankfulness that nobody was here,” Tucker said.

Large trees not only fell on two of the buildings on the property, but also damaged staircases, a fence, a golf cart, and outdoor furniture.

Tucker says the organization had to cancel all group visits to the property, because he doesn’t want any more trees to come down and risk anyone getting hurt.

He estimates a $25,000 loss in rooms, meal service, and events, at least until the end of the month.

“We are just keeping everyone away from the tree areas,” Tucker said, “especially down at my house. I have four trees around me. We have been sleeping somewhere else.”

He is still waiting for his insurance company to send someone over to assess the damage.

In the meantime, volunteers are breaking down branches a piece at a time to clear the mess.

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