Coast Guard rescues 2 kayakers off Maui

A Guard Station Maui 45-foot Response Boat-Medium crew comes alongside tow kayakers swept more than a half mile offshore by strong currents Dec. 15, 2016. Coast Guard crews responded to a call for assistance from the kayakers when they were beset by weather off Maui. (U.S. Coast Guard photo by Petty Officer 2nd Class Linda Bashqoy/Released)

A Guard Station Maui 45-foot Response Boat-Medium crew comes alongside tow kayakers swept more than a half mile offshore by strong currents Dec. 15, 2016.  (U.S. Coast Guard photo by Petty Officer 2nd Class Linda Bashqoy)

HONOLULU — Two local kayakers were rescued off of Lahaina by Coast Guard Station Maui, Thursday.

A Coast Guard Station Maui 45-foot Response Boat-Medium crew rescued the two fishermen and their kayak returning them to Lahaina Harbor in good condition.

Coast Guard Sector Honolulu watchstanders were notified at 11:38 a.m. by a Station Maui watchstander who’d received a call from one of the kayakers via a cell phone call that they were beset by weather prompting the response.

“These kayakers were proactive in calling the Coast Guard before they were pushed any farther from shore,” said Petty Officer 1st Class Robert Lewis, a watchstander at Coast Guard Sector Honolulu. “We recommend anyone going to sea wear life jackets, provisions and carry multiple forms of communication including a handheld VHF-radio and personal locator beacon when possible to maximize your ability to reach responders should you need help.”

The men were fishing just off shore of Puamana Beach Park when the ocean’s strong current carried them out too far. Unable to paddle in, one of the men used a cell phone to call the station and request assistance. The RB-M crew was conducting a training exercise in the immediate area and was diverted to respond.

The MLB crew reached the kayakers shortly after the call, approximately a half mile offshore of the beach park. They were brought aboard along with their kayak and taken to safety.

Weather conditions at the time of the rescue were reportedly 6 to 12 mph winds with 2-foot seas and heavy rain.

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