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Maui missing list drops to 66, but many reports still being vetted

At least 66 people remain unaccounted for a month after wildfires devastated a portion of Maui, and more names may be added to the list.

The official missing list narrowed by 82 percent from 388 last week, but the dramatic drop could be partially reversed if reports about an additional 80 people who are believed missing are confirmed.

Those reports are still being “vetted for credibility,” the Maui Police Department said.

The updated list of 66 names is the third iteration from the MPD and the FBI.

It was originally at 3,000, as is common in the confusion surrounding the first few days of a major natural disaster.

The death toll for the Aug. 8 blaze that leveled the town of Lahaina remains at 115.

Only about half of the victims have been identified.

Hawaii Governor Josh Green said he expects overlap between the names on the missing list and remains already recovered, which means the death toll should not increase much.

“We’re starting to see that the universe of 115 fatalities is about where we are,” Green said. “There may be some additional fatalities as we go through the next month.”

Of the victims who have been identified, 22 were in their 70s, 13 were in their 60s and one listed victim was under the age of 10, according to reports.

It will take three to four months before residents can return to their damaged and destroyed properties, the governor’s office said, because the Environmental Protection Agency must first remove hazardous materials from the area.

Travel restrictions to the island will lift on Oct. 8.

“Many have asked when it will be the right time to reopen West Maui to visitors,” Green said. “There is no easy answer to this question, but I can say that if we support Maui’s economy and keep our people employed, they will heal faster and continue to be able to afford to live on Maui.”

Travel restrictions to the island will lift on Oct. 8.

With Post wires

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