Maui News

Visitor Airlifted to Safety After Encountering Trouble Windsurfing in Kīhei

August 5, 2015, 8:43 AM HST
* Updated August 5, 8:44 AM
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South Maui shoreline. File photo by Wendy Osher.

South Maui shoreline. File photo by Wendy Osher.

By Maui Now Staff

A 46-year-old man was airlifted to safety after he ran into equipment problems while windsurfing with friends in South Maui.

Maui Fire Services Officer Edward Taomoto said the man was unable to navigate back to shore because of a broken sail mast.

Fire fighters were called to the scene at 4:42 p.m. on Tuesday, Aug. 4, 2015, near Waipuilani Park in Kīhei.

At 4:52 p.m. Kīhei firefighters met with the missing windsurfer’s friend who said he last saw his friend about two hours prior, heading straight out from Waipuilani Park, near the Maui Sunset condominium on West Waipuilani Road.

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The fire department’s Air 1 helicopter and rescue watercraft were launched to assist in the search. A Kahului rescue crew aboard Air 1 spotted the windsurfer hanging onto his board about a quarter-mile offshore of the Maui Sunset, and airlifted the man to a landing zone near the park’s parking lot.

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The man did not require medical attention. Firefighters on a rescue watercraft retrieved the man’s windsurf gear and brought it back to shore.

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