Jason Momoa is urging tourists not to travel to Maui amid the devastating wildfires that have devastated the 50th state.
The actor was active on social media this week, drawing attention to the fact that wildfires were raging across the Big Island and Maui and decimating the historic town of Lahaina. Now he’s begging tourists to stay away.
“Maui is not the right place to vacation right now,” said the Honolulu-born actor subtitled a video he shared via Instagram. “Don’t convince yourself that your presence on an island suffering so badly is necessary. Mahalo to all who have donated and shown aloha to the community during this time of need.”
The montage features flames sweeping across the island and a message overlaid on the devastating footage: “Do not travel to Maui. If you are planning to travel to Maui in the near future, cancel your trip. The devastation caused by the wildfires will have a lasting impact on Maui’s resources across the island. Our community needs time to heal, mourn, and recover. That said, the fewer visitors to the island consuming vital resources that are extremely limited, the better.”
The video went on to say, “Don’t book a hotel stay. The American Hotel & Lodging Association and the Hawaii Hotel Alliance are currently working with hotels in other parts of the world[s] of Hawaii to house displaced residents. The survivors have priority.”
More than four dozen people died, dozens were injured and hundreds of buildings were destroyed in the wildfires that ravaged Maui this week. Thousands were evacuated from their homes and much of historic Lahaina was reduced to rubble. Almost 1,000 people are still missing.
Hawaii Gov. Josh Green warned the death toll, which currently stands at 55, is likely to rise as search and rescue operations continue. The disaster prompted President Biden to declare a major disaster in Hawaii, opening the door for government aid and assistance. Officials said the Lahaina fire is now 80% contained, but many in the city are not Historical landmarks are lost.
Multiple fires also broke out on the Big Island this week, but there were no reports of casualties or home losses.
One of Maui’s fires raged across the city of Lahaina with such speed that people fled to the sea for safety, leaving the former capital of the Hawaiian kingdom in smoking ruins. in a (n Interview on the show “Today” on Friday morningMaui County Mayor Richard T. Bissen Jr. said the death toll so far only includes those found outside of buildings.
“What we saw was probably the largest natural disaster in the history of the state of Hawaii,” Green said in a public news conference Thursday.
Times contributors Alexandra E. Petri, Richard Winton, Jack Dolan, Jaweed Kaleem, and Summer Lin contributed to this report.