Heavy rains have breached a dam on the Hawaiian island of Maui, prompting authorities to open evacuation shelters after ordering everyone in its vicinity and along the nearby coast to leave.
The rains led to the cresting of the Kaupakalua dam in the island’s northern region of Haiku, state emergency management officials said in a statement.
“Failure of the dam will produce life-threatening flooding as well as significant property damage in areas downstream,” weather officials in Honolulu, the state capital, said in a statement.
Evacuation shelters were being opened at the Paia Community Center and Hana High School, governor David Ige said.
“Maui county officials have been informed that Kaupakalua Dam has been breached,” Mr Ige said on Twitter late on Monday, announcing that evacuations had begun.
Parks in Maui county will stay closed because of the rain and flooding, the parks department said.
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