Maui News

Search Initiated for Owner of Paddle Board off Nāpili, Maui

November 27, 2018, 9:31 AM HST
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Responders searching for owner of paddle board off Maui’s Nāpili Coast. 11.27.2018
Courtesy Photo
U.S. Coast Guard District 14 Hawaiʻi Pacific

A search has been launched for the owner of a blue and white paddle board found adrift off Maui’s Nāpili coast on Tuesday.

The paddleboard is 9-foot 8-inches, blue and white from Naish Surfboards with an unfurled leash and ankle strap.

At 7:26 a.m. on Tuesday, Nov. 27, 2018 watchstanders at Coast Guard Sector Honolulu received a report from a good Samaritan surfer of the paddleboard adrift near Pōhaku “S Turns” Park.

Crews from the Coast Guard and Maui Police Department are actively involved in the search with additional resources en route.

“Anyone with information about the owner of the board or how it came to be offshore is asked to contact us at 808-842-2600,” said Ensign Seth Gross, command duty officer, Coast Guard Sector Honolulu. “We don’t know if the board broke free and drifted or if this was a dawn patrol gone wrong. We’re working with our partners to saturate the area and locate anyone in distress.”

Pōhaku Park. File photo credit: County of Maui.


A 29-foot Response Boat-Small and crew launched from Coast Guard Station Maui to respond. The good Samaritan provided photos and remained with the board until the RB-S crew arrived.


A Coast Guard MH-65 Dolphin helicopter crew returning to Air Station Barbers Point from another mission off Kaneʻohe Bay was directed to refuel and divert to Maui for the search.

Weather in the nearshore area is reported as north-northwest swell of 3 feet at 16 seconds with waves to 5 feet, increasing to 10 to 15 feet offshore.

The Coast Guard reminds waterway users to label or register all gear, watercraft, and vessels to assist responders in identifying owners, making contact and potentially alleviating long searches, and helping to reunite people with their equipment and watercraft. A name and phone numbers are all it takes and a variety of labels, permanent marker, and stickers make this easy.


“Providing a contact number give us a place to start and often allows us to determine if the owner is in distress, loaned or lost the equipment and can significantly shorten the amount of time spent searching,” said Gross. “We recognize people don’t want to permanently mar the surface of a board or other gear with markings and that’s why the paddle-smart stickers or other tags are great. They can be removed and replaced. Ultimately it also helps protect your investment helping us find you to return your gear.”

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