A brush fire in Central Maui forced evacuations and temporarily diverted flights from the Kahului Airport. It was not yet contained Thursday eventing.

Maui County officials ordered Kihei residents north of Ohukai Road to evacuate to shelters at Kamalii Elementary School or Kihei Community Center.

A third shelter was opened at the War Memorial Complex in Wailuku.

A brush fire burns near Wailuku Heights on Maui on Thursday. The blaze forced evacuations and the diversion of all flights away from the airport in Kahului. Yoohyun Jung/Civil Beat

Maui County activated its Emergency Operations Center to respond to the fire, which was initially reported at 10:42 a.m. near the intersection of Waiko Road and Kuihelani Highway.

Firefighters were positioning equipment and personnel to protect the Maalaea Power Plant in South Maui.

Meanwhile, the Maui Humane Society moved its animals in crates and kennels to an evacuation site at Maui High School.

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