- Associated Press - Thursday, October 27, 2016

LIHUE, Hawaii (AP) - State officials have removed nearly 100 locks placed along a lookout in Kauai’s Waimea Canyon by couples who put them there as a symbol of their lasting love.

State law considers the placement of the “love locks” as littering, The Garden Island reported (https://bit.ly/2eIKXHK).

The locks are unsightly and damage infrastructure within Hawaii’s parks, said Curt Cottrell, administrator for the state Department of Land and Natural Resources. “Placing ‘love locks’ on fences, bridges and public structures is a serious and unsightly littering problem that promotes rusting and the decay of metal infrastructure which will weaken the safety fencing at our State Parks,” Cottrell said.

The locks removed from the canyon on Oct. 16 were limited to ones on a fence in the lookout area.

“We can try to address this through railing design moving forward,” Cottrell said. “People must respect the natural and cultural aspect of Hawaii’s special places and not add unsightly, damage-causing features such as locks.”

Officials will remove any new locks as soon as they are placed, Cottrell said.

Nalani Brun with the county Department of Economic Development said it’s important for Kauai residents to keep parks clean.

“On Kauai, we celebrate love in so many ways, often enveloped in the beauty of our natural surroundings,” said Brun, the department’s tourism and operations manager. “Thus, keeping our parks as pristine as possible is of utmost importance, and following the ‘leave no trace’ rule would help to prevent the degradation of our natural resources.”


Information from: The Garden Island, https://thegardenisland.com/

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