Maui News

Two vessels grounded in rough Maui weather

January 12, 2011, 6:02 AM HST
* Updated January 29, 2:41 AM
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By Wendy Osher

The grounding of two vessels off Maui were reported during the heavy rains on Monday.  One vessel was pushed onto a shoal, and another broke free of its mooring and hit a reef.

U.S. Coast Guard file photo courtesy PA3 Michael De Nyse.

Coast Guard Crews from the Maui Safety Team received a call at approximately 5 p.m. on Monday, that the Expeditions IV, a ferry that runs between Lahaina and Lana’i, briefly grounded while crossing the Lahaina Harbor channel. The vessel master reported that the ferry grounded on a shoal after being lifted by a swell.  The crew was able to navigate the ferry back to its mooring.  There were no injuries reported.  The vessel is temporarily out of service and will need to undergo a Coast Guard inspection before resuming operations.

A separate report was received at 6:30 p.m. on Monday by Coast Guard watch-standers at Sector Honolulu.  A 46-foot, catamaran broke loose from its mooring at Lahaina Small Boat Harbor, drifted approximately 100 yards and grounded on a reef.  There was no one aboard when the incident occurred, and no pollution was reported as a result.  A vessel salvage and fuel removal plan is being developed between the owner and the Coast Guard Incident Management Division.

“To help avoid potential incidents, all boaters, harbor facility personnel, and professional mariners should take time out to ensure their vessels and harbors are prepared for heavy weather operations,” said Cmdr. Jason Neubauer, Sector Honolulu chief of prevention.


Boat Safety Tips during Severe Weather:

  • Mariners should take additional steps to secure vessels while in port by doubling-up, lengthening and adding additional mooring lines.
  • Ensure automatic bilge pumps are operational and that all loose items are secured or removed.
  • Always check local weather and sea conditions prior to getting underway and avoid operating in heavy weather when possible.

When operations are necessary, the Coast Guard recommends filing a float plan with the harbor master prior to departure, including the date and time of departure, estimated date and time of return, and intended destination. A plan helps to ensure that search and rescue assets are dispatched in a timely manner when boaters fail to return on schedule.

(Supporting information courtesy Hawaii Coast Guard)

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