The Honolulu Fire Department (HFD) received a 911 call at 4:20 this afternoon for lost hikers on the Upper Waimano Trail in Pearl City. Five resource units, staffed with 12 personnel, responded to the rescue call. The first fire
fighters arrived to secure the landing zone off of Waimano Home Road at 4:35 p.m.
Three hikers confirmed they were not on the trail after leaving the Waimano Falls and had followed the riverbed instead, they were asked to move to an open area so they could be visually spotted from the air. Since the geolocation of the 911 caller plotted them over one mile in from the trailhead, Air 1 was used to do an aerial search with rescue specialists onboard. Visual contact with the three female hikers was made from the air and a rescue specialist was inserted to make physical contact to package them for extraction at 5:15 p.m. Air 1 airlifted each of them individually to a remote landing zone where it could land and have the hikers board the aircraft to transport them safely
to the landing zone at 6:00 p.m. The two 25-year-old hikers and a 26-year-old hiker, all visiting from Florida, did not need any medical attention. All HFD personnel and civilians were accounted for with no reports of injuries.
Hiking Safety Tips
● Start Exiting the Trail Well Before Sunset
Know what time the sun sets and allow enough time to exit well before dusk
arrives so visibility doesn’t make it harder for rescuers to find you.
● Stay on the Trail
Most accidents happen when hikers leave the established trail and disregard
warning signs. Staying on the trail greatly reduces your chances of getting injured
● Pack a cell phone
In case of an emergency your cell phone can be a lifesaver. Ensure that your
battery is full prior to your hike and carry an extra battery power source.