Please authorize helicopter and boat animal rescues in areas where animals are trapped
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The 2018 eruption of Kilauea is unprecedented in strength and volume and has trapped many animals in areas completely surrounded by lava. Dogs, cats, and many farm animals including cows, chicken, goats, sheep and other animals are trapped. Hundreds of volunteers not affiliated with any govt agency or the humane society are taking matters in their own hands and are evacuating animals at their own risk and expense. The rescuers are putting their own lives at risk because civil defense and the fire dept. have refused all access to those areas and do not provide any support.
Many clandestine operations are underway and are putting both volunteers and first responders at risk due to the lack of support. Some of the animals being rescued have burned paws and burned noses, we don't know how many more have already died. There are large channelized lava flows going to the ocean where goats climb up the side banks of the black cooled part of the flows and then their hooves break through the crust and they are burned alive. A lot of animals are now trapped on green mountain, which is completely surrounded by lava. But the broader isolated area encompasses many, many more acres that includes many pets and farm animals
The press is silent and isn't reporting on the issue because they are afraid they will loose access to the eruption areas. Meanwhile, the animals are dying in secret. It's been four weeks now that the tragedy has begun and we don't even know how many countless animals are left behind. Photos of lava are showing up with silhouettes of cats in the background.
We submitted a helicopter rescue plan well over a week ago that includes resources that we are willing to provide, including helicopter and an advanced crew that knows how to do technical animal evacuations. All we are hearing from civil defense are coquis and crickets. The silence is deafening. Others have submitted helicopter proposals long before we did, and these have also been refused.
We the people demand that animal welfare be attended to properly in this disaster and that volunteers be given access, and also be given the dignity of being communicated with by our govt officials with aloha and respect.
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