Lost power leads to lost business in Kalaeloa

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HONOLULU (KHON) — After the thunder-and-lightning storm in the wee hours of Tuesday morning — through flooded roadways Tuesday night — most of our lives got back to normal by Wednesday.

Several Kalaeloa businesses were not that lucky — one suffered dollar losses in the six-figure range.

Power is back to normal for K1 Speed, indoor go-kart racing, but it’s been a tough, dark week for it and other businesses in Kalaeloa.

Close to 70 percent of K1’s summertime business is walk-in — and with no power Tuesday, they had to turn customers away. Others with parties planned — had to be re-scheduled.

Similar situations happened at Pups of War, a Nerf battle zone and at Dogs of War, an airsoft park.

Both are primarily outdoor entertainment ranges, but depend on electricity for offices, computers and other systems.

The businesses rent from Hunt companies. Its Hawaii Region President Steve Colon apologized to tenants, saying, “we know that HECO and the Navy have been working diligently to solve this and have been told that the last of those affected will have power today. We regret the impact on our tenants.”

The hardest-hit, was Tamura’s.

Known for its fresh poke, the supermarket has had no power since the wee hours of Tuesday.

Michael Mita, operations director of Tamura Enterprises Inc., says, “we pretty much couldn’t save anything that was sale-able on the floor, but whatever we had in our back-room freezers and our back-room chill, we tried to save that.”

They borrowed a generator-powered, refrigerated container to save what they could.

With no power for about 96 hours, some two tons of food had to be tossed.

Mita says, we can’t donate because, like I mentioned to you before that, we have to think about the integrity of the product and we just have to destroy everything. Even if we think it’s good, it’s best to just be on the safe, you know, side of caution and just, dump it, destroy it.”

In addition to heart-breaking food waste, business losses are steep.

Mita says, “with the loss of revenue and product is in the six figures already.”

Capt. Marc Delao, commanding officer of the Naval Facilities Engineering Command, also apologized.

“We regret that this unscheduled power outage impacted the many businesses, residences, and military facilities at Kalaeloa for a substantial length of time.”
“Please be assured, our utilities personnel worked as quickly as possible to repair and restore power in a safe manner.”

One transformer was destroyed by the storm and had to be replaced. The new one arrived Thursday and was expected to restore power to the market by tonight.

Tamura’s will reopen in the morning if the power is on, but Mita says it may take a few days for it to be fully re-stocked.

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