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Investigation Begins After A Nanakuli Man Suffers Serious Burns

March 16, 2007 06:55 PM

By Leland Kim

NANAKULI (KHNL) - A freak accident puts a Nanakuli man in the hospital, with serious burns to most of his body. It happened on March 5, and Friday his lawyer said an investigation is under way.

Hale Malaki, Jr. works at the PVT Landfill in Nanakuli, which is a dump site for construction and demolition waste.

The husband and father of two was working on the morning of March 5. Malaki was directing trucks to specific dump locations at the landfill. His lawyer said the loads are typically cool ash, but one load was very different.

"As the semi tractor trailer dumped the hot ash at the landfill, the ash swept up from the truck like a wave, sweeping Mr. Malaki off his feet and knocking him to the ground," said Wayne Kekina, Malaki's attorney.

KHNL News 8 has confirmed the hot ash came from AES Hawaii, a coal plant next to H-Power at Campbell Industrial Park. H-Power said it had nothing to do with the March 5th accident. AES Hawaii said anytime water mixes with ash, there is a chance a chemical reaction could cause burning temperatures.

Malaki has undergone four surgeries. His lawyer said he is conscious and responsive. No lawsuit has been filed so far.