DPW cleans up trash at Mokuleia Army Beach

| September 9, 2016 | 0 Comments
Staff from U.S. Army Garrison-Hawaii find car parts, litter, grills and all types of illegally dumped bulk items during an Aug. 24 cleanup.

Staff from U.S. Army Garrison-Hawaii find car parts, litter, grills and all types of illegally dumped bulk items during an Aug. 24 cleanup. (Courtesy photo)

Christine Cabalo
Staff Writer

WAIALUA — Mokuleia Army Beach, here, once a filming location of monsters on the TV series “Lost,” recently was plagued by another type of threat.

U.S. Army Garrison-Hawaii staff slew the monster of trash and other illegally dumped bulk items choking out the sandy white beach during a cleanup held Aug. 24.

The beach, located near Dillingham Airfield, is open to the public and adjacent to Army training areas and well-used recreation sites.

Directorate of Public Works staff use heavy equipment to clean 11.6 tons of solid waste from the Mokuleia Army Beach area, Aug. 24.

Directorate of Public Works staff use heavy equipment to clean 11.6 tons of solid waste from the Mokuleia Army Beach area, Aug. 24. (Courtesy photo)

Members of the Directorate of Public Works brought out heavy equipment and extra staff to remove the 11.61 tons, or approximately 23,200 pounds, of solid waste from the area.

“We found car parts and a lot of loose trash all along the beach,” said Richard Kauahi, from the Business Operation Division of the DPW. “There were grills, tires and all kinds of things that got left behind.”

During the day, the beach is picturesque, but at night, it can get very dark with minimal streetlights and become vulnerable for illegal dumping, said Kauahi.

“It’s a shame because the beach has beautiful white sand,” he said. “The water is very clean, so you can snorkel or go fishing and swimming.”

Before the cleanup, it was hard to see the beauty for Sgt. Maj. Donald Thompson, the noncommissioned officer in charge for DPW.

“It was all trash, with trash bags all up and down beach,” he said. “There were so many bags, and there were also homeless folks sleeping on the ground.” Although DPW removed tons of trash, Thompson said there were no problems removing the heavier items.

“We brought in the right equipment and then also did eight hours of work,” he said. “We had loaders and backhoes that could move to the location of the heavy items, then drag it out, grab it and put it in dumpster. The equipment came from DPW.”

Illegally dumped trash and litter are cleared from Mokuleia Army Beach, near Dillingham Airfield, Aug 24. Staff from the Directorate of Public Works used heavy equipment, including backhoes and loaders, to reach the heavier items.

Illegally dumped trash and litter are cleared from Mokuleia Army Beach, near Dillingham Airfield, Aug 24. Staff from the Directorate of Public Works used heavy equipment, including backhoes and loaders, to reach the heavier items. (Courtesy photo)

Thompson and Kauahi said if anyone sees illegal dumping while at the beach, they should notify law enforcement. Thomspon said beachgoers can take down the license plates of dumpers and contact the Provost Marshal’s Office.

The public can also call the Honolulu Police Department about trash, or if they notice homeless encampments that are illegally in the area. However, the simplest practice Thompson said beachgoers can do is to not litter.

“If you have trash, take it with you,” he said. “Or, if you see it, pick it up. Don’t be the person that says (I) pick up trash – but (then I) litter.”

Stopping illegal Dumping
The Directorate of Public Works recommends if the public sees any illegal dumping at Mokuleia Army Beach to call the Schofield Barracks Provost Marshal’s Office at (808) 655-7114. Callers can also take down license plates and other identifying infor- mation to give to police.

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Category: Community, Community Relations, Native Hawaiian Community Program, Safety, Sustainability

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