Douglas Hesley, branch president of Associa Hawaii, the management group that runs the Marco Polo building, said in a brief statement Saturday that there will be an emergency board meeting to discuss recovery efforts.
Hesley said he could not comment on past fire drills or safety plans that were in place at the time of the fire.
Honolulu Mayor Kirk Caldwell said the city needs to look at passing a law requiring that older buildings be retrofitted with sprinklers.
In 2005, a previous mayor made a similar plea, creating a task force to investigate the costs and arguments for retrofitting older buildings with fire prevention measures including sprinklers. The rule was never implemented.
Tyler Takahata said he owned a unit on the 28th floor until 2015, when he sold the apartment to an elderly woman who was downsizing. He said he was never worried about fire during the five years he lived there because the building had water hoses and extinguishers.
“The fire suppression system seemed adequate. There were hardly any false alarms,” he said.
His former apartment is just above the unit where the blaze started and is now completely destroyed. He doesn’t know the whereabouts of the woman who moved in.
“Looking at what we’re seeing now, I believe they definitely needed sprinklers,” Takahata said.
Associated Press writers Caleb Jones, Marco Garcia, Jennifer Sinco Kelleher and Audrey McAvoy in Honolulu and Michael Balsamo in Los Angeles contributed to this report.