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Rescued hikers cited for entering restricted area near volcano

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Two hikers, who got lost in the state Kahauale’a Natural Area Reserve  last week, were cited for entering a restricted area after their rescue by Hawaii County firefighters.

Alexander Corey, 24, of Pahoa; and Deven Schuster, 23, of Maryland; got lost Jan. 29 and had to spend the night after returning from Puu O’o Crater. The Department of Land and Natural Resources closed the Kahauale’a Natural Area in July 2007 because of hazardous and unsafe conditions caused by volcanic activity. .

The pair were issued the citations Monday. The violations are misdemeanor offenses punishable by a fine and up to a year in jail.

“Entering into closed areas is a serious offense that unnecessarily risks lives and places rescuers in jeopardy,” said Carty S. Chang, Interim DLNR Chairperson.   “DLNR will enforce these closures and take enforcement action on violators,” Chang added.  

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