The Honolulu Fire Department (HFD) received a 911 call at 7:52 p.m. for a boater in distress offshore of the Makapuu Lighthouse area. Six HFD resource units, staffed with 21 personnel, responded. The first fire fighters arrived at scene at the Makapuu Lighthouse Trail at 8:04 p.m. and ascended by foot to get a better vantage point and visually search for the disabled vessel. Fire fighters visually made contact at 8:20 p.m. and reported that the vessel was offshore the tide pool area and did not appear to be drifting. The 911 caller, an off-duty fire fighter onboard with another person, reported that his 22-foot boat lost engine power and anchored about 100 yards offshore to prevent drifting inland. He also reported that the ocean conditions were presented with 20 mph winds with five foot swells. To make contact with the vessel, the Rescue 1 boat launched from Maunalua Bay while Air 3 picked up Rescue 2 specialists from the landing zone located at the Sandy Beach Park. While Air 3 marked the shoreline with the aircraft’s spotlight, the Rescue 1 boat proceeded to the location of the disabled boat and made contact at approximately 9:00 p.m. The two uninjured persons onboard were transferred safely to the Rescue 1 boat while tow lines were attached to the disabled vessel. The Rescue 1 boat removed the disabled vessel from its anchor and was under tow at 9:42 pm. While towing to the Makai Pier in Waimanalo, Air 3 provided overhead lighting in front of the Rescue 1 boat to identify shallow reef areas and channel markers. The disabled boat was secured safely at the Makai Pier at 10:10 p.m. All HFD personnel were accounted for with no reports of injuries.
Boating Safety Tips
• Check the boat’s engine and equipment before leaving.
• Always keep an anchor, extra fuel, warm clothing, and flares onboard.
• Bring two working forms of communication. Keep cellphones in a waterproof container.