On  September 2, 2011, two soldiers lost their lives unnecessarily at Mokolii Island, Kualoa Regional Park.   We are alarmed by what we learned.  Sources  told us that city and county officials and management were  warned by their lifeguard staff that high holiday use,  an exceptionally high tide, the strong current,  and the south swell made for a deadly mixture.    

 Mokolii Island is an attraction where  unsuspecting tourists or an inexperienced person attempts to hike to the island during low tide and frequently get in trouble when attempting to return during high tide and/or strong currents.  Apparently, this is what happened on September 2.   Sources tell us they recommended the area be manned by lifeguards  365 days a year because the offshore island itself is an attraction and thousands of people are lured there by its beauty.   Also, sources tell us it was commonplace to have a lifeguard there to save people's lives by simply alerting them to the dangers.  Also sources tell us for years they lobbied the administration for a jet ski and permanent manning of this particular area because of high visitation, its attraction, and its unpredictable but deadly weather and water conditions.

During our visit to Kualoa Regional Park on 9/2,  we noted a large number of campers coming and setting up for the weekend.   So,there may be hundreds if not thousands visiting over the Labor Day weekend.  Even so, we were told the administration elected not to have it manned by lifeguards.

 The  September 2, 2011, drowning is nothing new to this area.  Over the years there have been several drownings and other water-based recreational accidents.    Normally there are two lifeguards there.  We did not notice any postings of signs alerting the unsuspecting public or first-time users of dangers in the area.   

The lifeguards fall under the City and County of Honolulu Emergency Services Ocean Safety and Lifeguard Service.  Sources believe, with the proposed new merger with the Honolulu Fire Department , the lack of permanently assigned lifeguards to this area will be addressed.

This company participated in the rescue of the survivors, and brought one of the victims ashore