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Human remains unearthed

Discovery made by utility workers

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Dennis Fujimoto/The Garden Island

Human remains, believed to be ancient Hawaiian iwi, were discovered at the Kauai Sands Hotel during a trenching work.

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WAIPOULI — Several human remains were uncovered at the Kauai Sands Hotel in Waipouli while workers were digging to install utility lines near the resort’s swimming pool.

An archeologist on site Thursday afternoon, who asked to remain anonymous, said the discoveries included “human burials — less than 10, (but) more than four.”

“All of the proper people have been notified, including the state and police,” he said. “So, we have permission to do the work that we’re doing.”

Deborah Ward, information specialist with the Department of Land and Natural Resources, said Thursday afternoon that the department’s State Historic Preservation Division was awaiting inadvertent burial discovery form reports from Scientific Consultant Services “on a total of five sets of iwi that were disturbed during trenching in the project area.”

SCS is an archeological services company based in Honolulu.

“SHPD has notified the Kauai-Niihau Island Burial Council members, who are being consulted on (the) best way to take care of the na iwi,” Ward wrote in an email.

A hotel guest, who also asked to remain anonymous, said workers had been excavating on the hotel grounds for the last three days. In that time, “at least 10 brown bags” were removed from the sand, including seven the first day, according to the guest.

“It must be a really big burial site,” he said, adding that it made him uncomfortable that the project was allowed to continue.

The archeologist said it is “not unusual” to find bones in sandy areas near the beach, like those uncovered at Kauai Sands.

“I’d say we’re 80 percent, 90 percent, finished digging,” he said. “So we’re real close to the end.”

County spokeswoman Sarah Blane said that while the Kauai Police Department was notified, the findings are being handled by the state archeologist.

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Dennis Fujimoto/The Garden Island

Human remains, believed to be ancient Hawaiian iwi, were discovered at the Kauai Sands Hotel during a trenching work.

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