A motor vehicle accident in the Mana’e area Monday morning knocked out electrical power for about an hour and cable television service for about 32 hours.
On Monday, electrical power went down at 10 a.m. and was restored for most of Molokai by 11 a.m. By 3:20 p.m. Monday, power was completely restored by Maui Electric Company crews for East End customers.
The accident occurred on Kamehameha V Highway just before the Mapulehu area of East Molokai, about 15 miles east of Kaunakakai. According to Oceanic Time Warner Cable, a truck hit a utility pole in Manae pulling down its fiberoptic cable. Power was lost as well as cable and Internet service to the entire East End.
Rick Colletto, general manager for Oceanic TWC for Maui County, said a construction crew on Maui was unable to fly to Molokai on Monday. The earliest a crew could fly over was 11:30 a.m. Tuesday, said Colletto. The repair involved splicing fibers back together.
Because the fiberoptic trunk relays its television signal to Maui before being distributed to the whole county, cable television took longer to repair than the Internet connection. Colletto said the Internet was repaired quickly for its customers except those that lived east of the accident.
By 6-7:30 p.m. Tuesday, the whole island had cable television service restored, said Colletto.
Colletto said Oceanic TWC would not consider placing a technical crew on Molokai permanently. Finding qualified workers on Molokai was one issue, he said, and another is the lack of work on Molokai.
The Hawaii Department of Commerce and Consumer Affairs held a public meeting on Molokai two weeks ago to consider Oceanic TWC’s request for a 20-year franchise renewal for Maui County. If you were unable to attend the 2:30 p.m. Tuesday meeting, the public still has until Nov. 15 to submit testimony to the DCCA regarding the quality of cable service on Molokai.
A template for written testimony is available online at Akaku.org that offers a simplified way to submit testimony. All written testimony can be emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org, sent by regular to DCCA-CATV, P.O. Box 541, Honolulu, HI 96809, or fax 808-586-2625.