Officials are hoping to avoid disruptions in next month’s elections from an advancing lava flow in a mostly rural region on the Big Island of Hawaii. In August, Tropical Storm Iselle kept some voters in the Puna region from during the polls primary election, and there was subsequent confusion about how they could cast their ballots. Now, a lava flow threatens to isolate some voters ahead of the Nov. 4 general election.
Hawaii County clerk Stewart Maeda said the county would wait for an assessment of the lava flow Monday before publicly announcing any revised election plans. “We don’t want to create confusion, but we want to give notice as early as possible if the potential appears that Highway 130 will be impacted by Election Day,” he said.
In September, voters in three Puna precincts received absentee ballot applications in case they had to flee, and a special early voting walk-in site opened last week at Nanawale Estates Community Center in Pahoa.