The Honolulu Fire Department (HFD) received a 911 call at 8:13 p.m. Thursday for four lost hikers on Kaʻau Crater Loop Trail. Four HFD units responded with 13 personnel. The first unit arrived at 8:23 p.m. and HFD’s Rescue 2 and Air 3 arrived soon after to begin rescue efforts.
HFD personnel thoroughly assessed the situation and determined that helicopter operations would not be possible due to poor weather conditions. At that time, six fire fighters started up the trail on foot to search for the hikers.
Rescue specialists were able to use information from one of the hiker’s cell phone to approximate their geo-location coordinates and the four hikers were found at 9:43 p.m. The two male and two female hikers, all in their twenties, are visiting from Pennsylvania. They said they were hiking for about six hours when weather conditions changed and they became disoriented. They were unable to continue and called for help. HFD personnel escorted the hikers on the long, arduous trip back to the trailhead. All four hikers and six HFD personnel arrived safely at the trailhead at approximately 11:53 p.m. There were no reported injuries.
Most accidents happen when hikers leave the established trail and disregard warning signs. Staying on the trail greatly reduces your chances of getting injured or lost.
Be sure to have at least one cellular phone with a full battery in case you need to call for assistance.
Know your physical abilities and limitations and select trails that can be enjoyed safely.