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Ocean Rescue at
Camp Pecusa, Olowalu

Posted 10:02 AM HST, February 8, 2013
West Maui Honoapiilani erosion, file photo by Wendy Osher.

File photo by Wendy Osher.

By Wendy Osher

Three people were rescued from waters off of Camp Pecusa in Olowalu last night after their kayaks became stranded in the reef during the evening’s low-tide. 

The incident was reported at 8:15 p.m. on Thursday, February 7, 2013, about 200 yards offshore.

One of the kayaks became stuck in the exposed reef, took on water, and was abandoned during the incident, said Maui Fire Prevention Bureau Captain, and acting Public Information Officer, Paul Haake. 

A firefighter from Engine 3 out of Lahaina used a rescue board  to negotiate the coral, and towed all three in under his power to shore by 9 p.m., said Capt. Haake. 

The individuals, identified as a man in his late 50s, and two women (one in her late 40s, and the other 30-years-old), were reported to be cold and tired, but uninjured. 

Authorities say the group called for help via cell phone.  When crews from Engine 3 arrived on scene, they established contact via cell phone, and later pinpointed their location in the darkness via voice and lights.

The abandoned kayak was located by those aboard a passing fishing vessel, and was brought to shore along the Honoapiilani Highway, eliminating the need to notify the US Coast Guard of an unoccupied vessel adrift, said Capt. Haake.

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  • Lanz

    are you serious? If the kayaker’s hit the reef because it was exposed due to low tide, wouldn’t it made sense for them to jump off and walk? hmmmm???

    • Maui_Mike

      Probably not so easy to walk on that, could be nearly impossible and plenty painful!

      • Rys

        Plus by reading the article, it says it was at a time where there would be pretty much no light. In the cover of darkness, they would have no idea where they’d be walking when it comes to the rocks and reef. They could step on sharp rocks, sea urchins, etc. Fall, hit their head, and then they’re dead.

        Calling the authorities for help was the safe and responsible thing to do.

  • Ryan

    Just wanted to let the writer of the story know, camp pecusa WAS the name of th camp, when the episcopal church of hawaii owned the campgrounds, once sold, the official name is Camp Oluwalu!

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