Maui freediver found dead on ocean floor off Makena beach

A man is dead after being pulled from the ocean floor off a beach in Makena, Maui, Thursday afternoon.

At 1:13 p.m., fire rescue crews responded to a freediver that was reported unresponsive on the sea floor off of Oneuli Beach, also known as Black Sand Beach in Makena.

Ocean Safety lifeguards on watercraft met up with a small boat a quarter-mile offshore of Oneuli Beach and confirmed that a male freediver was resting on the ocean floor about 100 feet below the surface.

Attempts by the victim’s friends to retrieve him from the ocean floor were unsuccessful due to very strong ocean currents.

Rescue divers with scuba gear were flown to the scene by Air 1 and inserted into the water where ocean safety and fire rescue watercrafts were waiting.

At around 2:15 p.m., rescue divers recovered the victim and airlifted the man to a landing zone on a golf course fairway nearby. Paramedics pronounced the man deceased at the scene.

The male victim is a 29-year-old Maui resident. The man was freediving from a boat with two other Maui men about a quarter-mile off of Oneuli Beach when the accident happened.

Firefighters from Wailea and Kahului, Ocean Safety lifeguards from Makena State Park, and personnel from Coast Guard Station Maalaea responded to the incident.

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