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Roth’s Office: 5 Kona Ocean Rescues Since Friday

January 10, 2022, 4:13 PM HST
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The Hawaiʻi Fire Department reported five ocean rescues along the Kona Coast between Saturday and Monday, Mayor Mitch Roth’s Office stated in a press release reminding the public to use caution around the water as conditions remain dangerous.

A high surf warning remains in effect for the west-facing shores of Hawaiʻi Island through Tuesday. Due to the impacts from the high surf and ocean conditions, the several county beach parks are closed until further notice: Kahaluʻu Beach Park, Laʻaloa Beach Park, and Māhukona Beach Park. Other beaches may close without notice, pending additional impacts from the swell. The public will be notified of any closures.

“We are asking that folks use extreme caution when entering waters off of the Kona Coast,” Roth said. “From what we understand, the conditions are hazardous, even for the most advanced of swimmers, and we ask that you use your best discretion before deciding to jump in. We’ve seen a lot of ocean-related incidents over the past year and want to ensure that everyone makes it home to their families, friends, and loved ones. The ocean is special to us for so many different reasons, but it is also extremely powerful and should be respected as such.”

Video captured a rescue on Sunday where companies from Keauhou and Kailua fire stations along with Chopper-2 were dispatched to Lekeleke Bay (“End of the World”) for a person stranded on an outcropping of rocks in the bay due to large surf. Chopper-2 utilized the Billy Pugh rescue net and lowered a Fire Rescue Specialist to the victim in a very precarious position with the high surf and rough conditions. The victim was loaded onto the Billy Pugh net, extricated just before a massive wave hit the location where he was stuck, and then safely brought to shore. The victim denied any need for EMS treatment or transport.

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