MAUNA KEA, Hawaii – The University of Hawaii, which manages the summit area of Mauna Kea, says the access road will remain closed at Halepōhaku, and only “authorized personnel” will be allowed through.
UH made the announcement shortly after noon on Monday. Here is the full media release.
The Mauna Kea summit road beginning at the Halepōhaku mid-level facilities will remain closed to all but authorized personnel until further notice. The University of Hawaiʻi Office of Mauna Kea Management is currently assessing damage to the road and stability of the slopes for potential rock falls.
UH exercised its authority under the Mauna Kea Comprehensive Management Plan to close the road last week due to hazardous conditions. They included the presence of boulders on the road, rock walls that fully obstructed the road in some areas and the erection of two ahu in the road. The obstructions prevented the university from grading the road, a necessary road safety procedure performed twice weekly.
The Visitor Information Station at the 9,200 foot level is also closed until further notice for health and safety reasons.
UH agrees with Governor Ige’s concerns that actions that unlawfully obstruct the road to the summit are unacceptable. UH supports the governor’s wish to open a safe roadway to all.
The closure follows the June 24 day of blockades and arrests on the mountain in opposition to the Thirty Meter Telescope. After speaking to authorities, the self proclaimed protectors of Mauna Kea put out a notice to supporters that they do not believe the TMT will attempt construction this week.