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Video: USCG Rescues Lost Divers off Maui

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File image courtesy USCG

By The Maritime Executive 2019-10-09 18:56:17

On Monday, the U.S. Coast Guard rescued three divers who lost contact with their dive boat about 20 miles off the northern coast of Maui.  

"These were seasoned divers who became lost after diving for an extended amount of time," said Lt. Megan Bowis, command center chief at Coast Guard Sector Honolulu. "It can happen to anyone. By staying together and calling attention to themselves with their fins and splashing, we found them."

Coast Guard Sector Honolulu watchstanders received a report at 1400 hours via the Maui Police that an operator of a 23-foot vessel transporting three divers lost contact with them about 20 miles north of Ho'okipa Beach Park, an area with deep water.

The USCG launched a Dolphin helicopter aircrew and an HC-130 Hercules airplane crew from Air Station Barbers Point, a response boat from Station Maui and diverted the cutter Ahi to the scene. 

The Dolphin helicopter crew found the vessel and began the search. The Hercules crew located the missing divers who were waving their flippers in the air, and the airplane dropped a flare so the boat crew could find the divers. 

Once the boat crew rescued the divers, they transported them back to their dive boat. Station Maui personnel escorted the boat back to Kahului and conducted a post-SAR boarding, finding no violations. There were no reported injuries. 

"Super successful case, these guys stuck together. We got assets out on the scene quickly and we saved three lives," said Chief Petty Officer Ekahi Lee, officer-in-charge, Coast Guard Station Maui.