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DLNR Closes Maui Beach After Fatal Shark Attack

The Department of Land and Natural Resources (DLNR) has closed Makena State Park and ocean waters from Big Beach to La Perouse light house to swimmers, divers, and other ocean users.

Makena State Park Beach is closed after a fatal shark attack.

Makena State Park Beach is closed after a fatal shark attack.

This is in response to a fatal shark bite this morning in the Kanahena Cove area of Ahihi-Kinau Natural Area Reserve.  DLNR Division of Conservation and Resources Enforcement officers, Division of Aquatic Resources staff, and County lifeguards are on scene to investigate and warn the public. Shark warning signs are being posted. Further details about the incident are pending.

The area will be closed at least until noon tomorrow, at which time officials on the scene will assess the area for reopening.

Details about other recent shark incidents in Hawaii can be found at http://dlnr.hawaii.gov/sharks/shark-incidents/incidents-list/

Shark Kills Man Fishing from Kayak Off Maui


The Department of Land and Natural Resources (DLNR) and County lifeguards have closed waters off Makena State Recreation Area, following a fatal shark bite before 10:20 a.m. this morning in which a man was bit while fishing from a kayak half a mile off a point near Little Beach.

Makena State Recreation Area

Makena State Recreation Area

A companion, also on a kayak, said the man was fishing with artificial lures to attract baitfish when his dangling foot was bit by a shark.

His fishing partner was about 500 yards away when the incident occurred, then paddled over, tied a tourniquet and asked a nearby charter tour boat for assistance. The boat brought the injured man to Kihei boat ramp from where he was transported to the hospital.

Shark warning signs are being posted to advise the public to remain out of the water from Ahihi Bay to Makena Landing.

The beaches are open but the public is advised to stay out of the water.

DLNR staff and County lifeguards will continue to monitor the nearshore waters today and in the morning will reassess the area. If no sharks are seen, the area will reopen at noon tomorrow, following state shark incident protocol.

According to the Division of Aquatic Resources, this is the 13th reported shark incident statewide this year, and the 8th on Maui. Over the last 20 years, Hawaii has averaged about four unprovoked shark incidents per year (see http://www.hawaiisharks.org/incidentyear.html), but numbers per individual year are highly variable. There were no reported incidents in1998, and just one in 2008. In 2012, the 10 incidents reported were at the time unprecedented.

“We are not sure why these bites are occurring more frequently than normal, especially around Maui. That’s why we are conducting a two-year study of shark behavior around Maui that may give us better insights,” said William J. Aila, Jr., DLNR Chairperson. “It is our hope and expectation that numbers of incidents will return to a more normal range in the near future.”

Aila continued, “We offer our condolences to the family of the victim. Our thoughts and prayers are with them.”

UPDATE: Police say 57-year-old Patrick Briney of Stevenson, Washington died Monday while fishing from a kayak off Maui’s southwest coast. State Department of Land and Natural Resources says the shark bit his dangling foot.

In a State of Shark Paranoia

Note this first appeared here on HuffPost Hawaii:

With the recent shark attacks that have happened in the state of Hawaii, there seems to be a state of paranoia going on. I understand folks are afraid of sharks and they are certainly the last thing I would ever want to see in the ocean, however, they are there and there is nothing we can really do to prevent them from being in their ocean.

The State of Hawaii Department of Land and Natural Resources (DLNR) now has budgeted $186,000 for a two year study that will be lead by Dr. Carl Meyer to study shark movements around Maui.

As a taxpayer, this study sounds ridiculous to me:

“DLNR is paying close attention to the recent series of shark incidents statewide,” said William Aila, DLNR chairperson. “These appear to be random events involving sharks of different species and different sizes. There’s nothing we can yet discern that connects the incidents or provides any sort of explanation.” In 2013, there have been eight incidents, including four within the last month. Four of this year’s incidents occurred on Maui, three on the Big Island, and one on Oahu.

Most of us here in Hawaii understand that there are sharks in the ocean. If you ask the majority of folks who are attacked, getting back into the ocean is often considered one of their number one priorities after healing from their wounds.

Spending $186,000 of our money to basically tell us that yes, there are sharks in the ocean just seems a bit ridiculous to a resident of Hawaii like me. I could see that money going to hire more lifeguards, which would definitely save lives in the future!

Just a bit of trivia, two Universal Studio movie producers, Richard D. Zanuck and David Brown read a novel written by Peter Benchley named “Jaws.” After reading the book, they purchased the movie rights to “Jaws” for only $175,000 and the rest is history.

DLNR UPDATE – Pohoiki Shark Attack on Jimmy “Ulu Boy” Napeahi – Pohoiki to Reopen Tomorrow

The Department of Land and Natural Resources closed ocean waters along the Pohoiki coastline in Puna this afternoon, following a shark incident in which a 16 year old male surfer was bit across both legs at the Pohoiki surfing area near the Pohoiki boat launch ramp. The male was transported by County Fire Department first responders to the Pahoa Fire Station, and he was then air lifted to Hilo Medical Center.

Ulu Boy Napeahi - Here is a picture of him surfing in the Shane Doian Keiki Surf Competition when he was 10 years old. Please pray for him! (Photo via Karen Welsh)

Jimmy “Ulu Boy” Napeahi – Here is a picture of him surfing in the Shane Dorian Keiki Surf Competition when he was 10 years old. Please pray for him! (Photo via Karen Welsh)

A DLNR aquatic resources specialist posted shark warning signs at publicly-accessible areas of Pohoiki Bay and north of Pohoiki at the area known as “Shacks”.
DLNR Division of Conservation and Resources Enforcement officers responded to warn beach-goers and ocean users. County Fire Department planned to send a helicopter up today to scan ocean waters in the area for presence of shark(s).
Shark warning signs will remain up until the Monday morning assessment by state and county officials and helicopter flyover.
If no sharks are sighted, the warning signs will come down and waters will be reopened by noon.  No information was immediately available on size and type of the shark.

Shark Attacks Surfer at Pohoiki in Puna on the Big Island

Well Hawaii sure has been having its fair share of shark attacks in the last few month.

Pohoiki Boat Ramp

Pohoiki Boat Ramp

Today a shark attacked a surfer at Pohoiki!  Fire Department officials say the attack happened Sunday at Pohoiki Beach also known as Isaac Hale Park in Puna.

Fire and Emergency medical officials responded to the Pohoiki boat ramp and the victim, a surfer, was taken to Hilo Medical Center.

No word yet on the extent of the surfer’s injuries and what condition the surfer is in.  The name of the surfer has not yet been released.  (UPDATE: Jimmy “Ulu Boy” Napeahi is the name of the surfer that got attacked)

Ulu Boy Napeahi - Here is a picture of him surfing in the Shane Doian Keiki Surf Competition when he was 10 years old. Please pray for him! (Photo via Karen Welsh)

Ulu Boy Napeahi – Here is a picture of him surfing in the Shane Dorian Keiki Surf Competition when he was 10 years old. Please pray for him! (Photo via Karen Welsh)

Officials closed Pohoiki Beach shortly after the incident.

Situation Found at Scene: Firefighters arrived at Pohoiki Boat Ramp and found 16-year old male being treated by Life Guards on scene. Per Pt. he was surfing at “Dead Trees” surf location when he was attack.

Remarks: Victim sustained multiple lacerations and puncture wounds to lower extremities. Pt was treated and transported by M-10 to Pahoa Fire Station where he was transferred to C-2 and transported to Hilo Medical Center Emergency Room.  A helicopter conducted an aerial surveillance in the area of the shark attack, with negative results

Shark Attack Off Kona

Hawaiʻi Island police have initiated a public accident case in connection with a shark attack Tuesday afternoon in waters off a Kona beach.
Kekaha Kai State Park
A 28-year-old Kailua-Kona man was swimming about 100 feet off shore shortly before 1 p.m. when he spotted a shark in waters off Kekaha Kai State Park, also known as Kona Coast State Park. As the man was swimming to shore, the shark bit him on the right thigh and right calf and then released him. The swimmer made it to shore, where a Fire Department helicopter took him to Kona Community Hospital with injuries that were not believed to be life threatening.

A 12-14-foot tiger shark was sighted in the area shortly after the attack. The park was closed to the public until further notice.

And from the Hawaii Fire Department:

A 28 year old male shark bite victim was found conscious and alert. The patient was attended to by bystanders and a volunteer firefighter. The patient was transported to Kona Hospital by Chopper 2.

Fire rescue and medical units from Kailua-Kona and South Kohala Fire Stations responded to a 28 year old male with lacerations to his right leg above and below the knee due to a shark bite. The male patient was attended by bystanders and a volunteer firefighter who helped to control the bleeding. The victim was conscious and responsive. He was taken to Kona Hospital by Chopper 2 of the South Kohala Fire Station. A shark estimated to be 10 to 14 ft in length was observed near shore in the area.

Sneak Preview of “Soul Surfer” the True Story of Bethany Hamilton

Soul Surfer is based on a true story, about a teenage girl, Bethany Hamilton (AnnaSophia Robb), who has to gain the courage to surf again, after losing her arm in a shark attack.