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Snorkelers rescued in waters off Lawa‘i Beach

KUKUI‘ULA — Seven snorkelers in distress were rescued Friday morning in waters fronting Lawa‘i Beach Resort in Kukui‘ula.

No injuries were reported.

At approximately 10 a.m., Kaua‘i Fire Department Koloa firefighters and Ocean Safety Bureau officials with the South Roving Patrol Unit were dispatched to Lawa‘i Beach after a caller reported a group of snorkelers in distress. Rescue specialists from the Lihu‘e station who were at the Koloa fire station for training also responded to the call.

Once on scene, firefighters saw a group of snorkelers being pulled out to sea towards the surf spot known as Acid Drops, while a surfer in the water was trying to assist them. Two firefighters on rescue boards entered the water with rescue tubes. They reached the group of snorkelers who were all responsive but reported they were unable to swim back to shore due to the strong current.

Lifeguards on personal watercraft arrived on scene and shuttled a total of seven snorkelers, including their snorkel guide, back to shore. The snorkelers were part of a snorkel tour company’s guided tour and were taken out during high surf conditions. A second snorkel guide who was originally with the group swam back to shore when the others were getting pulled out to sea.

A high-surf advisory remains in effect for all south-facing shores on Kaua‘i. All beach-goers should exercise caution and speak to a lifeguard before entering the water.

For updated information on ocean and weather alerts, visit the NWS website, weather.gov/hfo.

For up-to-date information about Kaua‘i ocean conditions and ocean safety, speak to a county lifeguard at any lifeguard station, visit hawaiibeachsafety.com, or call the KFD Ocean Safety Bureau at 808-241-4984.
Source: The Garden Island

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