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Coast Guard searching for boaters in distress off Kauai

By Star-Advertiser staff

LAST UPDATED: 10:52 a.m. HST, Dec 3, 2013

The Coast Guard is seeking the public's help in identifying two boaters who were seen in possible distress when their small inflatable boat hit the reef off Kalalau Beach off northwest Kauai on Monday.

The Coast Guard said it received a call at 6:30 p.m. from a concerned hiker who observed two people in a small inflatable boat with an outboard engine striking a reef just off the beach. The boaters then attempted to hand paddle their black 8-foot inflatable boat out to sea toward Haena Beach Park. The boaters were observed unsuccessfully attempting to restart their engine.

Kauai Coast Guard officials coordinated efforts with the Kauai Police and Fire Departments to check boat ramps and landing areas along the coast to verify the safety of the two men, but have yet to find anyone matching the description. 

The Coast Guard also launched its H-65 Dolphin helicopter crew from Barbers Point Air Station to search for the boat, but could not locate them. The Coast Guard Cutter Galveston Island arrived on the Napali Coast at 6 a.m. today to join the ongoing search effort.

Anyone with information regarding the two boaters' whereabouts or safety is requested to contact the Coast Guard Command Center at (808) 842-2600.

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