Water disinfectant will change
The Department of Water Supply on or about Wednesday will switch the distribution system disinfectant for the Upper Kula water system from chlorine back to chloramines.
Chloramines have been used since 1985 in the water system, the department said.
The water department had made a temporary switch to chlorine in November due to the near-empty levels of the Upper Kula reservoirs, which required the use of the Piiholo Water Treatment Facility while the Olinda Water Treatment Facility has been on reduced service.
The department said that both treatment facilities filter water from East Maui, but the Olinda facility uses a microfiltration technology and chloramines for disinfection, while Piiholo uses direct filtration and chlorine.
When the Olinda facility comes back on line this week, the switch will be made.
Customers with questions about water quality can call the department's laboratory at 270-7550, or visit mauiwater.org. For health concerns, customers can call the Maui District Office of the state Department of Health at 984-8200.
More high surf for shorelines
A high-surf advisory has been extended for the north- and east-facing shores of Maui and Molokai until 6 p.m. Wednesday, the National Weather Service in Honolulu said.
A northwest swell was expected to build Monday night and is expected to reach advisory levels for the next couple of days. The swell is expected to decline Thursday, though a much larger, very long period of northwest swell will build in its place, the weather service said.
A high-surf advisory means that high surf will affect beaches in the advisory area, producing rip currents and localized beach erosion.
Police investigate arson in fire
Police are investigating arson in a fire Sunday night that destroyed two portable toilets and caused nearly $40,000 in damage at the Pukalani Community Center.
When a Makawao engine company arrived on scene seven minutes after the 11:40 p.m. alarm, the roof of the bathroom facility was engulfed in flames, said Fire Services Chief Lee Mainaga. He said that the fire appeared to have started on the outside of the building where the two portable toilets were placed.
A Kula fire crew also responded, and the fire was brought under control at 11:57 p.m. and extinguished at 12:23 a.m. Monday.
Damage to the portable toilets was estimated at $8,000. Damage to the 600-square-foot cement restroom, located below the swimming pool, was estimated at $31,000.
Mainaga said that the restroom sustained heavy roof damage, with approximately 80 percent of the structure damaged.
Police said that the fire Sunday night followed two earlier cases where Christmas trees were set on fire at the center.
Arrest in alleged bottle assault
A homeless man was arrested for assaulting another homeless man with a beer bottle last week near Kanaha Beach Park, police said.
Bail was set at $1,000 for Justin Wiersma, 31, who was charged with second-degree assault.
The assault occurred sometime Wednesday night at the area of the park near the sewage treatment plant, said Lt. Jayson Rego of the Criminal Investigation Division.
He said that the two men had been drinking alcohol before Wiersma confronted the other man, alleging that the man had stolen from Wiersma.
Wiersma picked up the beer bottle, striking the other man on the left side of his head and causing a laceration and bruises, Rego said. He said Wiersma also allegedly punched the other man's head.
Police were called Thursday morning when the victim went to the Maui Memorial Medical Center emergency room to be treated. He required stitches for the laceration, Rego said.
Wiersma was arrested at 8:50 a.m. Thursday.
BHS meeting set for Thursday
The Baldwin High School Foundation's fourth annual meeting will be held at 5 p.m. Thursday in the school library workroom.
The benefits of the foundation's school and scholarship programs will be discussed. Donors, alumni, staff and community members are invited to attend.
Those attending are asked to RSVP with Warren Shibuya at 878-3778 or Mel Ito at 270-6901.
For information on the foundation, go to www.hpbaldwinhighschoolfoundation.org.
Charges possible in drug probe
A 52-year-old man arrested when police reported finding a clandestine drug lab in a Kihei residence has been released pending further investigation of drug charges, police records show.
The man was arrested Thursday when Crime Reduction Unit and Special Response Team officers executed a search warrant at 144 Luakaha Circle.
In addition to the methamphetamine conversion laboratory, police reported recovering methadone pills, two glass smoking pipes containing crystal methamphetamine, and 14 rounds of 30-30 ammunition. Police also seized six mopeds, including two that were reported stolen and four that were suspected of being stolen.
Another man believed to have been living at the residence was arrested Sunday night in the Lahaina Patrol District, police records show. Curtis Welch, 40, was described as the live-in boyfriend of homeowner Deborah Davidson, who also was being sought by police.
Welch was released Monday pending further investigation, police said.