DOD has until Sept. 7 to resubmit Red Hill defueling plan

The Department of Defense must resubmit its Red Hill defueling plan to the Hawaii Department of Health by Sept. 7 after the department rejected it.

“The DOD’s submission lacks the requisite details and specificity necessary for the DOH to fully evaluate how the Navy will execute safe and expeditious defueling,” wrote Deputy Director for Environmental Health Kathleen Ho in a letter accompanying DOH’s comments.

The DOH issued an emergency order in May requiring the DOD to defuel the tanks after a spill in November forced hundreds of residents from their homes and sickened many.

The report prepared by the U.S. Navy showed that about 20,000 gallons of fuel that had been transferred into overhead pipes in May spilled in November due to human error, Rear Admiral Christopher Kavanaugh told a joint meeting of Hawaiian legislators.

The Department of Defense announced earlier this year it would shut down the Red Hill facility. The Navy's plan indicates it would likely be December 2024 before that is complete.

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