Maui Blowhole Video Prompts Reminder of Outdoor Risks
Outdoor enthusiasts are often drawn to Maui for the breathtaking views, tropical scenery, and land features seen nowhere else on earth, but are often reminded of the dangers that exist when they get too close for comfort.
Recent drone video taken at the Nākālele Blowhole in West Maui has raised some questions about visitor safety to the area and prompted a friendly reminder for everyone to be alert in our natural surroundings.
Maui Communications Director Rod Antone responded to our request for comment saying, “Maui is a beautiful place but people need to use some common sense when it comes to exploring the outdoors.”
In July of 2011, authorities from the County of Maui issued a reminder to the public to exercise caution when visiting the Nākālele Blowhole, after a visitor was knocked over by a wave, fell into the blowhole, and could not be found. Authorities were unable to locate or recover the man’s body.
At the time, the county’s advisory stated that “an obvious danger exists.”
“The blowhole is dangerous and has already claimed one life in recent years. We advise people to stay away and view from a distance,” said Antone.
Maui Fire Services Officer Edward Taomoto also recalled the incident and urged the public to pay attention to ocean swells at all times. He said the department responds to a number of calls, usually relating to injuries, falls and sprained ankles at the site; and noted that there is an added risk factor of incoming waves when walking between the blowhole and the ocean.
“Know your physical limits,” said FSO Taomoto. “The hike back up is demanding and you can easily lose your footing,” he said. “You have to pay attention.”