First responders on Kauai conducted multiple vehicle rescues in the Lawai area during Wednesday’s heavy rains and flash flood warning, according to county officials.
The first incident was reported shortly after 1:35 p.m., when two females in a vehicle were stuck on a flooded portion of Lawai Road near the National Tropical Botanical Garden. Responders observed water elevated 2.5 feet above the roadway, disabling the car, officials reported.
Firefighters were able to help the two women get out of the vehicle and to higher ground. No injuries were reported, and Lawai Road near NTBG was closed until water levels receded.
Just about an hour later, at approximately 2:25 p.m., another vehicle was swept into Lawai Stream near Kua Road, with a man and dog inside.
Kalaheo firefighters responding to the incident found upon arrival that a good Samaritan had already retrieved the man from the car and brought him safely to the streambank. The man reported no injuries, but there were no signs of the dog.
The National Weather Service had issued a flash flood warning for Kauai, effective from about 11:40 a.m. to about 4:30 p.m. Heavy rains closed Hanalei Elementary School early, and police alternated traffic at Kuhio Highway near Hanalei.
NWS advises people not to cross fast-flowing or rising water in a vehicle or on foot during a flash flood warning.
Kauai officials want to remind island residents to heed all warnings, and to take them seriously during extreme weather events.
“Mahalo to our first responders and Good Samaritans for rescuing three individuals during yesterday’s Flash Flood Warning,” said Kauai Fire Department Chief Michael Gibson in a news release. “Fast-flowing or rising water in streams and roads are very unpredictable during Flash Flood Warning conditions. As a reminder, please heed all warnings during extreme weather events for the safety of yourself, others, and our first responders.”
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