Lifeguard’s coconut concussion at Hanauma Bay raises concerns

The city closed Hanauma Bay on Sunday for emergency tree work to repair damage done by Hurricane Ana.

KHON found out a lifeguard was injured Friday, before the work could be done.

Lifeguard Harold Teshima had 15 minutes left on his shift Friday afternoon at 3:15 pm.

Teshima walked out of the lifeguard tower and started cleaning up.

The next thing he remembers was waking up in a daze.

“I remember feeling my forehead, feeling blood dripping down my nose. I didn’t know what was going on. So I laid down,” said Teshima.

Teshima’s fellow lifeguards rushed to his aide. They noticed a coconut nearby.

“We expect getting injured on the job. Never expected a coconut to land on me like that! Or happen at all in my career,” said Teshima.

According to the lifeguard, the coconut was roughly the size of a softball, weighing three or four pounds.

He was rushed to the hospital and found out he had suffered a head concussion, laceration, neck strain, and nausea.

“It could have been prevented,” said Teshima. “We started reporting it two, three weeks ago. Letting them know coconuts were falling, the size of golf balls. Now they’re the size of soft balls or bigger.”

Hanauma Bay beach access was closed early Sunday for what the city called “emergency tree work” to “repair damage from Hurricane Ana.”

“Knowing the hurricane was coming, they should have come before that,” said Teshima. “Before it even came close to us. Not happy with whole situation.”

The lifeguard is still eager to get better and return to work.

“Its a good thing it happened to me and not a child or infant,” said Teshima. “Could have been fatal. Could’ve been fatal to me, actually.”

The Department of Parks and Recreation sent KHON a statement saying, “Trees at Hanauma Bay are regularly trimmed every six months and they were last trimmed five months ago. DPR expedited the normal trimming schedule as a result of Friday’s incident.”

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s