20 People Safe After Caught by Flash Flood at Hālawa Valley, Molokaʻi
SWIFT WATER RESCUE AT HALAWA VALLEY ON MOLOKAI: 3:46 p.m. 3/25/16.
(Update courtesy: Maui Department of Fire and Public Safety)
At approximately 3:25 p.m. this afternoon, Maui Fire Department crews on Molokai responded to reports of several people unaccounted for after flash flooding occurred in Halawa Valley. Engine 12 from Pukoo, Engine 4 from Kaunakakai, and Engine 9 from Hoolehua were called on scene to assist. Engine 12 personnel were the first to arrive and confirmed 20 people in 2 separate groups missing. At that point, the crew made their way up a trail in the direction the groups were last seen. Engine 12 personnel eventually met up with the parties, who had already safely crossed the river, and escorted them back down the trail to safety. No injuries were reported, and with all parties accounted for, crews were able to leave the scene at approximately 6:07 p.m. The groups were hiking on the trail when a flash flood occurred. They then decided to stay put in safe locations until water dropped back down to a level in which they could safely cross the river. The groups consisted of both visitors and local residents ranging in ages 6 to 38. The Maui Fire Department urges the public to view the safety information and recommendations regarding flash flooding at this link to the County of Maui website:
Rescue crews have been dispatched to locate 20 individuals who were hiking in separate groups in the Hālawa Valley area of Molokaʻi. One of the groups is described as a family of eight individuals.
Flooding conditions continue preventing assistance at this time from Air 1.
SWIFT WATER RESCUE AT BAMBOO FOREST: 3:51 p.m. 3/25/16.
Maui fire and rescue crews have been dispatched to respond to a report of a swift water rescue at the Bamboo Forest Trail near Mile 6 of the Hāna Highway. Maui Fire Captain Rylan Yasuhiro tells Maui Now that the incident was a false alarm and units have returned to their quarters.
A flash flood warning was issued for parts of Maui until 5:15 p.m., a flood advisory is in effect until 8 p.m. for the island of Maui, and a flood watch is in effect until late tonight as deep tropical moisture associated with a trough of low pressure moves across the county, according to the National Weather Service.