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For Immediate Release
December 3, 2021


HONOLULU – Last night, the Board of Water Supply (BWS) completely shut down its largest water source on Oahu, Halawa Shaft, due to reports from the Navy regarding contamination at their Red Hill well. On Tuesday, November 30, when the BWS heard about Red Hill well being shut down on Sunday night, they immediately reduced pumping capacity by 50%: 10 million gallons per day to 5 million gallons per day. While this reduction did not impact customers’ use, it did signal serious concerns from the utility.

“We are deeply concerned that we were not notified immediately by the Navy regarding the shut down of their Red Hill water source,” stated Manager and Chief Engineer Ernest Lau. “We have data that shows when they stop pumping at Red Hill, water starts moving in the direction of our Halawa Shaft due to our pumping. In an abundance of caution, we must shut down Halawa Shaft until further notice.”

The BWS will make up the 20% supplied by Halawa Shaft by upping pumpage from other resources. They do not anticipate any major impact at this time and, as always ask customers to implement good water conservation practices. They will monitor water consumption closely and if anything should change, they will alert the public immediately.

If there are any questions, please call (808) 748-5041 or email



Kathleen Elliott-Pahiinui
Information Officer
Honolulu Board of Water Supply
(808) 748-5319

About the Board of Water Supply

The Board of Water Supply (BWS), a semi-autonomous agency of the City and County of Honolulu, manages Oahu’s municipal water resources and distribution system. As the largest water utility in the State, the BWS serves approximately one million customers on Oahu. The BWS embraces its mission of "Water for Life – Ka Wai Ola" – to provide a safe, dependable, and affordable water supply, now and into the future. Uwē ka lani, ola ka honua – "When the heavens weep, the earth lives."