Investors Trying to Buy Burned Land in Hawaii

On Monday, Newsweek disclosed that as the aftermath of the devastating wildfires on Maui, Hawaii, still unfolds with hundreds missing from the Lahaina town tragedy, realtors and investors are reportedly reaching out to victims, looking to purchase their properties.

An individual voiced her indignation in a video shared on the Kāko’o Haleakalā Instagram account, a group dedicated to land and species preservation. She expressed her anguish: “The audacity of investors and realtors to approach families who’ve lost everything at this moment is inconceivable. Victims, if they contact you, document their details so we can publicly hold them accountable.”

The county confirmed a death toll of 96, with the wildfires consuming more than 2,700 acres on Maui. In Lahaina, 2,170 acres were burnt, and over 2,200 structures were razed.

Echoing her earlier sentiments, the woman further added, “It’s heart-wrenching to know that several families, some of whom I’m close to, were approached with monetary offers by these investors and realtors. Such behavior is disgraceful. Those realtors from Maui participating in this, beware of the consequences.”

Hurricane-strength winds, surpassing 70 mph, exacerbated the wildfires on August 8th. These are now recognized as the deadliest in a century, as stated by the New York Times.

The fires’ rapid spread strained Maui’s water resources, making firefighting efforts even more challenging. “The hydrants were devoid of water,” remarked Keahi Ho, a firefighter stationed in Lahaina.

In response to the calamity, Hawaii’s Democratic Governor, Josh Green, announced his fifth emergency declaration on Sunday.

His office elaborated to Newsweek: “This latest declaration introduces more law relaxations to expedite emergency protocols, recovery, and reconstruction. It ensures that healthcare facilities and professionals, unless exhibiting recklessness, gross negligence, or deliberate misconduct, won’t face civil lawsuits during this period. Furthermore, it removes the spending limit of $10 million from the Major Disaster Fund for this emergency and advises against non-crucial travel to West Maui. This will ensure available lodgings for those rendered homeless and for emergency personnel.”

However, Newsweek mentioned that the specific realtors or firms reaching out to the victims remain unidentified.