Catamaran awaits repairs, inspection after passengers thrown overboard

Local News

One day after huge waves swamped a catamaran in waters off Haleiwa, throwing passengers into the water just outside the harbor, the surf appeared a bit more calm.

Meanwhile, the 40-foot Hoonanea is now docked at Waianae Boat Harbor awaiting repairs and an inspection by the U.S. Coast Guard, who is investigating the incident.

On Sunday, the catamaran was struck by waves of up to 18 feet high in the channel leading to Haleiwa Harbor.

Those thrown overboard were pulled out of the water by fire rescue and ocean safety teams. One person was taken to the hospital in stable condition and five others were treated for minor injuries.

A fishing boat captain at Haleiwa Harbor explained who usually makes the call to venture out to sea when a high surf advisory is issued.

“It’s usually the captain,” said Steve Shiraishi, captain of the fishing boat Honuaoe. “I run a charter boat and I left yesterday in the dark, came back at 3 in the afternoon. I never had a problem. You just have to go by the rules.”

A crew member with the catamaran who was not on hand during Sunday’s incident said the huge waves bent a rudder and damaged a window. The catamaran also lost a fuel tank.

The crew member also said Sunday’s rough waves prevented the captain from getting back to Haleiwa, so the crew had the boat towed instead to Waianae.

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