The Hawaii Fire Department (HFD) along with the Hawaii Police Department responded to ultralight aircraft that made an emergency/hard landing within the Kukio Development Community in the North Kona district Wednesday Morning (March 20th).
The initial call came in 9:56 am Wednesday Morning and crews from the South Kohala and Makalei (HAZ-MAT Company 21) Fire Stations along with Battalion 2 responded to the scene and upon the arrival of HFD crews, determined that an ultralight aircraft had lost power after taking off from the Ellison Onizuka Kona International Airport (KOA) moments earlier and was making an attempt to land in flat grassy but instead made a hard landing on lava rocks within the Kukio Development and later came to rest on top of a large volume propane tank.
The 2 male occupants of the ultralight were able to self extricated and were tended to by First Responders from the Kukio Development community until HFD Medics arrived on scene to take over treatment, of which one of the male occupants was transported to North Hawaii Community Hospital for further medical evaluation and other male occupant refused treatment at the scene.
HFD crews investigated the 1,100-gallon propane tank, of which the aircraft had rested upon, for any leaks and later determined that no leaks were present, but shut gas off until Gas utility company arrived on scene to make any repairs if needed as a precautionary measure.
HFD consulted with the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) to receive clearance to move the aircraft off the propane tank and once approval was given, Staff from Kukio Development along with HFD personnel secured the aircraft away from the propane tank to where it could be safely looked at by an investigator from the NTSB, who is expected to arrive on island Thursday to begin the investigation.