A devil down in Campbell
A dust devil swirled around at Campbell Industrial Park shortly before 12:30 p.m. yesterday. A National Weather Service forecaster identified it from this photograph. Forecaster Tim Craig said dust devils are quite common and can occur when winds are calm and the ground heats the air above it. They will sometimes twist, Craig said.
Repairs shift air traffic
Aircraft traffic over Kalihi to downtown Honolulu is expected to increase today due to airfield maintenance work at the airport.
Runway 8R at the Honolulu Airport will be closed from 7 to 10 a.m. for maintenance work. During these times, flight patterns for departing aircraft will be modified, resulting in increased air traffic over the above areas, according to the state Department of Transportation.
Surfer’s killer to get lighter sentence
SAN DIEGO » A California appeals court has reduced a murder conviction against a man convicted of killing a professional surfer to manslaughter.
The 4th District Court of Appeal ruled yesterday there was insufficient evidence to prove Seth Cravens meant to kill 24-year-old Emery Kauanui when he punched him in 2007.
Cravens’ case will be returned to the trial court for resentencing. He faces up to 16 years in prison instead of 20 years to life after being convicted of second-degree murder in 2008.
Raised on Kauai, Kauanui was a fixture at San Diego’s Windansea Beach, where his favorite surf break is now called Emery’s Left.
Prosecutors say a bar argument led to a confrontation outside the home of Kauanui’s mother in the wealthy seaside enclave of La Jolla.
Reef restoration test successful
Progress is being made in an experiment to fight invasive seaweed taking over Hawaii’s coral reefs.
The Department of Land and Natural Resources reported yesterday that biologists are finding successful results after a year of removing foreign algae undergrowth and then using native grazing sea urchins to keep algae from returning.
The combination could eventually be expanded to help restore the health of other reefs suffering significant invasive seaweed.
Biologists tested their methods by placing collector urchins to help graze invasive seaweed on one side of a reef, while leaving the other side of the reef alone.
Today, the side of the reef with the urchins has very little invasive seaweed and the other side is covered with it.
Humpback protection may increase
LIHUE » The regional director for the Hawaiian Islands Humpback Whale National Marine Sanctuary says its boundaries and regulations could expand.
Sanctuary Regional Director Allen Tom made the comments last weekend on Kauai during a meeting on an updated management plan.
About 12,000 humpback whales, which are a federally protected species, migrate to Hawaiian waters each winter.
A group called Kohola Mana Ohana says the sanctuary includes about 1,400 feet of ocean surrounding the islands where rules and regulations restricting fishing practices and limiting sonar activity have never been enforced.
Tom heard suggestions to collect derelict fishing nets, set up boat speed limits and limit acoustics that interfere with whales’ ability to communicate.
Push to ban unmarked patrols falters
HILO » A Hawaii County councilman is ending his quest to stop the police department’s use of unmarked patrol cars.
North Kona Councilman Kelly Greenwell said Tuesday his proposal to ban unmarked cars had nothing to do with his confrontation with police last month, which resulted in a speeding violation and charges of resisting arrest, resisting an order to stop and refusing to provide identification.
Greenwell said he wanted to improve the department’s image by discontinuing the use of its eight unmarked cars, which don’t display a blue light on the roof.
The lawmaker said he didn’t get any support from colleagues, so he decided to withdraw the resolution from the council’s Public Safety and Parks and Recreation Committee.