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Kauai first responders make multiple ocean rescues

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Kauai first responders were busy conducting multiple ocean rescues at two sites – Anini Beach and Queen’s Bath — during dangerously high surf today.

At about 11:30 a.m., first responders got a call about two distressed snorkelers in waters off of Anini Beach. One was a male visitor from Washington state and the other a Wailua resident.

The Ocean Safety Bureau North Roving Ski Patrol and Hanalei fire station responded. Lifeguards found one snorkeler, while a local surfer with a rescue tube alerted firefighters of the second snorkeler, who was about a third of a mile off shore.

First responders observed 12-foot surf during the rescue. Both snorkelers were brought back to shore safely, and declined medical treatment.

Shortly after 1:30 p.m., firefighters from the Hanalei were dispatched to Queen’s Bath in Princeville based on a report of four visitors in distress. The four visitors were reported to be visiting from Texas, Wisconsin, Mississippi, and Florida.

They found the four visitors sheltering against the cliff by Queen’s Bath with large, 12-foot surf. Two had suffered injuries — one had minor leg injuries while the other suffered from multiple, non-life-threatening injuries.

Three of the visitors were escorted to safety and later refused medical treatment. The visitor with more severe injuries was airlifted by a helicopter to medics from American Medical Response and transported to Wilcox Medical Center.

Since October, access to Queen’s Bath has been closed in the interest of public safety, officials said.

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