On Friday, Oct. 13, 2017, at around 8:15 a.m., emergency crews in West Maui responded to reports a 25-foot sailboat adrift off of Pohaku Park, better known as, “S-Turns” in Kahana.
Napili firefighters were on scene at 8:23 a.m. and spotted the sailboat about a mile offshore with no one visible on board. A rescue watercraft from Fleming Beach Park and a rescue boat from Lahaina responded to the incident after it was discovered that someone had paddled out with a longboard to reach the drifting vessel.
Crews eventually found the male on the longboard just as he reached the vessel. The man, a 22-year-old from Lahaina, was the owner of the sailboat. He was able to start the sailboats auxiliary motor and navigated back to the vessels original mooring at Mala Wharf in Lahaina. The Lahaina rescue boat escorted the sailboat back to Lahaina.
The boat’s owner said he discovered his sailboat missing from its mooring spot at Mala Wharf on Thursday night and thought that someone had stolen it. A friend phoned him on Friday morning that his sailboat was seen adrift a mile offshore of “S-Turns.” After spotting his boat offshore, he got a longboard and paddled out. His friend called 911 for help. The man guessed that his boat broke its mooring sometime Thursday and drifted the 6 miles to the north where the sailboat was found.
Fire crews from Napili and Lahaina, along with ocean safety lifeguards from D.T. Fleming Beach Park responded to the rescue call.