Hawai'i State News

Missing sailing vessel Malulani arrives in Hawai‘i

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Sixty-year-old Noel Rubio arrived safely in Hawai‘i with his sailing boat “Malulani” on Saturday, one day after the United States Coast Guard called on the maritime community to help find the then-missing mariner.

The vessel Malulani is a 32-foot Westsail sloop that departed Long Beach, California, Dec. 28 enroute to Kaneohe, O’ahu, Hawai‘i, crewed by Noel Rubio with a planned arrival date of Jan. 18.

After receiving notification on Friday, the Coast Guard began efforts to locate Noel Rubio and the vessel Malulani.


The Coast Guard used all available means to determine the Malulani’s location, including urgent marine information broadcasts (UMIB) and harbor checks in California, Hawai‘i and Mexico. He last made contact via cellphone Dec. 28, from south of Catalina Island, California informing a friend that he was enroute to Hawai‘i. The only means of communication aboard the vessel Malulani is a VHF-FM marine band radio.

“The Coast Guard is greatly appreciative of the expert consult advice on weather and routes provided by experienced trans-pacific sailors,” said Douglas Samp, a search and rescue (SAR) mission coordinator in the Rescue Coordination Center Alameda. “Mariners intending to conduct an open ocean passage are highly encouraged to have multiple layers of communication, including a VHF-FM DSC radio, HF DSC radio, satellite communications, and a 406Mhz electronic position indicating radio beacon (EPIRB) as the notification of last resort to help SAR authorities locate your position in a time of need.”


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