HFD Rescue Equipment Stolen at Pohoiki

Thieves broke into a locked storage shed at Isaac Kepo‘okalani Hale Beach Park (Pohoiki) early Monday morning, and stole Hawai‘i Fire Department equipment including a Polaris off-road vehicle used to launch the park’s rescue water craft.

PC: Ikaika Marzo

The theft occurred around 5 a.m., and a security guard just coming on duty witnessed two males escaping on a Polaris 500 utility vehicle loaded with equipment, according to the Fire Department. 

The equipment included a Lifepack automated external defibrillator (AED), a Motorola portable radio, a rescue paddle board, a spinal immobilization board and 200 feet of heavy-duty rescue rope. The estimated value of the stolen equipment was $30,000.

PC: Ikaika Marzo

The theft of the safety equipment takes away much-needed assets that assist the Fire Department Ocean Safety Officers (lifeguards) in performing water rescues. 

“Because of this theft, the beach park and Puna district lost the service of the Rescue Water Craft — which is priceless in saving lives at one of the most dangerous shore breaks on the island,” Hawaii Fire Department Deputy Chief Lance Uchida said. “The Polaris was used to launch the Ski at the beach park, and without the Ski, we put our lifeguards in unneeded danger during water rescues.” 

“We ask the public to please assist the police in finding the perpetrators,” Uchida said.

Anyone with information regarding this incident is asked to call the Police non-emergency number at (808) 935-3311.

Big Island Mayoral Candidate Ikaika Marzo was obviously upset about the theft and posted the following video on Facebook after he found out about the incident:

Battalion Chief William Bergin Chosen Fire Fighter of the Year

William Bergin, a Battalion Chief, was recently recognized by the Aloha Exchange Club of East Hawai‘i as the County of Hawai‘i Fire Fighter of the year for 2019.  Battalion Chief Bergin was presented with an individualized award plaque and special gift basket from various Big Island businesses by Club President Curtis Chong and Event Chair Joey Estrella at the Hawai‘i County Fire Department Administrative Office due to the current temporary suspension of public gatherings amid the COVID-19 pandemic.  

BC Bergin, besides his important work as Battalion Chief for West Hawai‘i, was recognized by the Fire Department for his tireless efforts in securing important funding towards necessary equipment and off-road vehicles to battle West Hawai‘i wildfires.  Besides Hawai‘i County Funding, Bergin was able to secure private resources saving the County nearly a million dollars for the specialized equipment.

BC Bergin is a proud member of the County of Hawai‘i Fire Department, and cares deeply for the men and women under his command, always mindful of keeping them safe from harm.  His goal is to leave things better than he found them, and is grateful for everyone who has been part of creating a safe working environment for our fire personnel.

Lava Flow Crosses Fire Break – Brush Fire Reignited

The lava flow has gone over the fire break line that was designed to hopefully contain the fires that were happening from the Puna Lava Flow and a brush fire has reignited in the Hawaiian Home Lands area of Puna.

Brush fire 115

Brush fire at 12:50 this afternoon

Another fire break line is currently being made to hopefully protect residents and businesses in the affected area of Hawaiian Home Lands.

Pu'u O'o erupting on the left... Brush fire down the slope on the right.

Pu’u O’o erupting on the left… Brush fire down the slope on the right.

Civil Defense is waiting for an update from Hawaii County Fire Department to make an assessment on their plan of actions.

A shelter will be set up at the Pahoa Community Center if an evacuation is ordered.  In the mean time… here is the Civil Defense Message that was published before the brush fire broke out.

This is an eruption and lava flow information update for Thursday January 15th at 11:30 AM.

Today’s helicopter over flight and assessment will be delayed however preliminary ground assessments show that the original flow front and south margin breakout remain stalled. A breakout along the north side of the flow is active and has advanced down slope to an area near the stalled front. This current active down slope breakout has advanced approximately 200 yards per day over the past two days and is located 0.6 miles from the area of Highway 130 to the west or mauka of the Pahoa Police and Fire Stations. Two breakouts along the north margin approximately 1-1.5 miles further upslope or behind the flow front remain active and a more thorough assessment will be performed later today. The Hawaii County Civil Defense Agency and Hawaiian Volcano Observatory are maintaining close observations of the flow. All current activity does not pose a threat to area communities and residents and businesses down slope will be informed of any changes in flow activity and advancement.

With the ongoing dry weather conditions, brush fire activity related to the lava flow is likely. Hawaii Fire Department personnel and equipment are on scene and monitoring the fire conditions. There is currently no fire threat to area residents and properties.

Smoke and vog conditions were heavy with a southwest wind blowing the smoke in a northeast direction over the areas of lower Puna through Hilo. Smoke conditions may increase in some areas and individuals who may be sensitive or have respiratory problems are advised to take necessary precautions and to remain indoors.

Additional updates will be broadcast as conditions change.

On behalf of the Hawaii County Civil Defense Agency and our partners we would like to thank everyone for your assistance and cooperation.

Hawai’i Fire Department’s 13th Annual EMS Run To Be Held In Hilo

In celebration of Emergency Medical Services Week, the Hawai’i Fire Department is sponsoring their 13th annual EMS Family Fun Run/Walk, Keiki Fun Run, and Health Fair on Saturday, August 3, 2013. The event will take place at Lili’uokalani Park in Hilo, and the public is invited to participate.
The 5K Family Fun Run and 2-Mile Walk begins and ends at Lili’uokalani Park. Both events will begin at 8:30 a.m. A Keiki Fun Run, a non-competitive event for children ages 3 to 10, will be held within Liliuokalani Park following the 5K run.
Applications may be downloaded, obtained at the Spencer Health and Fitness Center, the Fire Administration office located at the County Building, 25 Aupuni Street, Suite 2501, in Hilo, at any district fire station, or by calling 932-2900 during normal business hours. The entrance fee is $20 for adults, and $10 for youth, students & seniors (60+).
Awards will be presented following the completion of the event. All participants will also become eligible to receive random drawing prizes which have been provided by our generous sponsors.
The family fun run/walk will also kick off various events and displays that will continue throughout the day. The American Heart Association (blood pressure screening), Ululani Pharmacy (blood sugar/cholesterol screening), Big Island Asthma Coalition-East Hawai’i (asthma awareness and education), Hospice of Hilo, Tri Fit (personal fitness assessment administered by Kea’au High School students), and the County of Hawai’i Prosecuting Attorney’s Office (Keiki ID) are among the agencies that will provide their services to the public.
The Hawai’i Island branch office of the American Cancer Society will have volunteers and staff on hand to assist with the event as well as to provide information about their services.
One of the beneficiaries of the EMS Run will be the Greg Cameron Fireman’s Fund, a non-profit fund that will be used to help firefighter’s families that need help while fighting hardship and disease.
EMS Week, which is celebrated nationwide, will bring together local communities and medical personnel to publicize safety, and honor the dedication of those who provide the day-to-day lifesaving services of the medical “front line.” The celebration of EMS Week underscores the commitment and dedication of the 750,000 EMS personnel who provide an essential community service every day. The Emergency Medical Services Week coordinators are Battalion Chief Lance Uchida (Emergency Medical Services Bureau, telephone 961-8319) and Battalion Chief Jerry Lum (telephone 961-8348). The fun run/walk race director is EMS Captain Jesse Ebersole.
The County of Hawai’i’s Emergency Medical Services Division provides 24-hour quality pre-hospital emergency medical care and services to the residents and visitors on Hawai’i. Last year, EMS responded to 15,310 calls for assistance island wide. To learn more about your local EMS Bureau, please call 961-8319.