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EPA Hazardous Materials Removal, First Stage of Multi-Phase Cleanup, is 75% Complete on Maui
Ash and debris stabilization expands; removal and disposal of electric and hybrid vehicle batteries begins
October 18, 2023
EPA Public Information Officer (R9_PIO_2@epa.gov) 808-539-0555
LĀHAINĀ, MAUI, Hawai’i – The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has removed hazardous materials from over 75 percent of the burned properties in Lāhainā, Maui – the first phase of the overall federal cleanup response to the Maui Wildfires.
EPA’s work to identify, assess, and remove hazardous materials is Phase 1 of the two-phased federal response to dealing with debris on burned properties. Phase 2 is the removal of all debris from the affected properties, which will occur after EPA’s work is complete and will be overseen by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.
EPA crews have expanded their operational focus to include ash stabilization efforts in Lāhainā and electric and hybrid vehicle battery deconstruction.
Cultural monitors continue to assist EPA personnel on-site during household hazardous material and soil stabilization efforts.
On October 13 EPA began the application of soil stabilizer (Soiltac) on the ash and debris footprints of burned buildings and many burned vehicles with damaged lead-acid batteries. The application of soil stabilizer will help reduce mobility of the toxic ash that could impact peoples’ health and the environment if it spreads to surrounding properties and water.
EPA is working with the County of Maui to identify, recover, transport, and dispose of lithium-ion batteries from electric and hybrid vehicles. Owners of electric and hybrid vehicles should not attempt to start, work on, or sit in their vehicle remaining in the disaster area. Fire-damaged electric and hybrid vehicle batteries need to be handled with specific care to ensure the protection of response personnel and the community.
Learn more about EPA’s work in Maui.
EPA crews upend an electric vehicle to remove the battery pack. Any remaining energy will be discharged before preparation for shipping.
Crews sifting through the ash and debris footprint of a property sprayed with the soil stabilizer on Oct. 13.
Crews sifting through an unsprayed ash and debris footprint on Oct. 13.