August 21, 2002

 

Dr. Bruce Anderson
Hawaii Department of Health
Honolulu, HI  96813

Dear Dr. Anderson,

The attached photographs depict the condition of a portion of Doleís irrigation canal adjacent to the Kaukonahua Road, above Otake Camp.   EnviroWatch Inc. recently shared  these, and other photos, with Mr. Tom See at the Department of Healthís Clean Water Branch.   Along with the photos we also provided information concerning the gathering of freshwater clams from the irrigation ditches.

As you know, the source of water in the irrigation ditch is effluent treated water from the Wahiawa Waste Water Treatment Plant via the Wahiawa Reservoir, as well as from the Schofield Barracks Waste Water Treatment Plant.  

On several occasions we witnessed individuals wading in the irrigation canal gathering clams.   During conversations with the gatherers we learned that the clams are being eaten and sold.  We believe human consumption of these clams is a potential health risk and the public should be notified.

We understand that Mr. See has taken positive steps in addressing this matter and has met with Dole to correct the issues.    We believe the irrigation ditch should be either repaired, fenced in, or placed in a pipe.  Also, signs in various languages should be posted along the irrigation ditch to inform the public about the health risk associated with eating the clams and coming in contact with the water.

Again we appreciate Mr. Seeís promptness in addressing this matter.   If we can be of further assistance please do not hesitate to contact us.

                                                                                    Sincerely, 

                                                                              

                                                                                    Carroll E. Cox, President

               

Disrepair of Irrigation channel                                    Water by passing original Irrigation channel

                                                                                   

 Gatherer in irrigation canal                                                                  Clams just gathered

 

 

Clams gathered from the Irrigation Canal                                            Canalís easy access