The Honolulu Fire Department (HFD) received four 911 calls on May 15, 2021 during a 31-minute time frame for people needing to be rescued in the ocean and mountains. During this time frame, the HFD committed 17 resource units and 52 personnel to perform the rescues safely and efficiently. The following are descriptions of the four emergency incidents:
Maunawili Falls Trail- Injured Hiker
The HFD received a 911 call at 1:52 p.m. for an injured hiker on the Maunawili Falls Trail. Six units staffed with 21 personnel responded. The first firefighters arrived at Maleko Street at 2:03 p.m. to access the trail. They ascended up the trail by foot to the base of the Falls and made patient contact at approximately 2:22 p.m. Apparently, a 29-year old male, fell approximately 10 feet onto the rocks below and injured his back and was unable to exit the trail on his own. The injured hiker was packaged and airlifted to the landing zone located nearby at the Maunawili District Park where patient care was transferred to the Emergency Medical Services at 2:47 p.m. Another person in the hiking party was also airlifted to the landing zone while the remaining two other hikers in their party exited the trail on foot.
Turtle Beach- Swimmer in Distress
The HFD received a 911 call at 2:01 p.m. for a swimmer in distress at the Turtle Beach in Makaha. Five HFD units staffed with 13 personnel responded. The first firefighters arrived at the scene’s shoreline at 2:08 p.m. and discovered a male swimmer about 20 feet from the shoreline being assisted by others in the ocean. Apparently, while paddle boarding about 50 yards offshore, he was separated from his board and was caught in a rip current at the time of the 911 call. The Ocean Safety and bystanders brought the uninjured swimmer to shore safely.
Friendship Gardens Trail- Lost Hikers
The HFD received a 911 call at 2:19 p.m. for lost hikers on the Friendship Gardens Trail in Kaneohe. Four units staffed with 12 personnel responded. The first firefighters arrived at the scene near the trailhead at 2:30 p.m. and ascended by foot to make patient contact. Apparently, an adult male and female were hiking on the trail since 9:30 a.m. and were lost. Both were uninjured and airlifted to the landing zone located nearby at the Kaluapuhi Park at approximately 3:15 p.m.
Mokulua Islands- Swimmer in Distress
The HFD received a 911 call at 2:23 p.m. for a swimmer in distress near the Mokulua Islands in Kailua. Two HFD units staffed with six personnel responded. The first firefighters arrived at the scene’s shoreline at 2:44 p.m. Apparently, the caller and his wife were standing on the reef offshore and needed help returning to shore. Fortunately, both were wearing life jackets and did not require any medical attention. The Ocean Safety lifeguards brought both of them and their kayak and surfboard to shore at 3:03 p.m.