The Honolulu Fire Department (HFD) received a 911 call at 4:54 p.m. for an injured hiker on the Manana Trail in Pearl City.  Five resource units staffed with 16 personnel responded to the rescue call.  The first fire fighters arrived at 5:06 p.m to secure a landing zone for Air 2 near the open area fronting the Pearl City High School.  The second fire-fighting unit arrived at the trailhead at 5:15 p.m. and ascended the trail on foot to begin a ground search.  Since the geolocation of the 911 caller plotted them over one-half mile in from the trailhead and dusk was approaching, Air 2 was used to do an aerial search with rescue specialists onboard.

Visual contact with the group of five hikers, who were hiking for two hours, was made from the air and a rescue specialist was inserted to make physical contact at 5:36 p.m.  The 911 caller reported that the 19-year-old male slipped while climbing the waterfall and fell approximately nine feet into the water below injuring his knee and foot.  After receiving first aid treatment for his injuries, he was packaged for extraction.  Air 2 safely airlifted the injured hiker to the landing zone at 5:52 p.m. where patient care was transferred to the onscene Emergency Medical Services unit.  The injured hiker, a military service member stationed on Oahu, refused medical attention from the EMS.  Two other hikers, a male and a female in the group, were also airlifted individually to the landing zone while the remaining two females descended the trail on foot under their own power.  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 or lost.

  • 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.