Kauai News

Storm brings damages to Kaua‘i including a drill rig on the mauka Wailua River Bridge rail

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7:09 a.m. April 15 update: The mauka Wailua River Bridge on southbound Kūhiō Highway is open. Lanes have been narrowed so drive with caution. As a reminder, the bridge will close at 8 p.m. to continue debris removal.

On Sunday night, crews began cutting the drill rig boom that fell onto the bridge during the weekend storm.

Drill rig being cut on April 14, 2024, after falling on mauka rail of Wailua Bridge following storm. Photo credit: HDOT

Original post: State crews continue their work to remove a drill rig after it fell onto the mauka Wailua River Bridge rail following heavy rains that brought flooding to several parts of Kaua‘i.

The torrential rainstorm swept through the island late Thursday into Friday morning. The widespread flood resulted in road shutdowns, several rescues and boats adrift from the Līhuʻe harbor.


Rain continued through the weekend. Hawai‘i Department of Transportation started working on removing the drill rig on Saturday. According to officials, crews pulled off around 4 a.m. Sunday due to lightning. Storm debris needed to be removed before it affected the structure.

The bridge was inspected and the drilling rig has not compromised its structural integrity. The drill rig was being used for Wailua River Bridge repairs.

While the contractor works to remove the fallen rig, another is working to remove storm debris. The current estimate of the amount of debris that needs to be removed from under the bridge is 5,000 square yards.


The goal is to reopen the southbound bridge this morning and close for nightly debris removal from 8 p.m. to 5 a.m. for the rest of the week.

Kūhiō Highway near Hanalei Bridge remains closed.

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