Two rescued after outrigger canoe breaks in two

Photo courtesy Shala Fernandez
Photo courtesy Shala Fernandez

At 4:54 p.m. Saturday, Maui firefighters responded to reports of a boat that broke apart and was taking on water one mile offshore of Keawakapu Beach.

A kayak was reportedly bringing one person from the distressed boat to shore, and another person was still with the boat.

Wailea firefighters arrived at 5:03 p.m. and eventually spotted the white kayak as it was heading back out to sea. Crews met up with a woman that was brought back to the beach by the kayaker. She said the kayaker was going back out to help her male companion, who was still with their two-man outrigger canoe that had broken in half.

A fire department rescue watercraft found the kayaker and the male with the canoe about 300 yards from shore. Firefighters assisted the 2 men with bringing the canoe to shore after they were found trying to tow the swamped hull that was now in 2 pieces.

By 5:30 p.m., all parties were back on shore on the south end of Keawakapu Beach. The 55-year-old man and 56-year-old woman, both from Wailuku, were uninjured. The couple was making a downwind run about a mile offshore when they took a hit from a large wave. Their canoe broke in two and they were in the process of swimming the canoe to shore when the Good Samaritan with the kayak showed up.

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