Hiker rescued after getting lost in the Kahaualeʻa Natural Area Reserve and Trail Sunday afternoon (January 5th).
The Hawaii Fire Department (HFD) along with the Hawaii Police Department (HPD) responded to reports of a lost hiker on the Kahaualeʻa Trail in Puna Sunday afternoon (January 5th).
The initial call came 3:38 pm Sunday afternoon and HFD crews from the Volcano and Waiakea (Rescue Company 2) Fire Station along with Battalion 1, Chopper 1, and HPD officers from the Puna Patrol responded to the scene located at the trailhead of Kahaualeʻa Trail on Captain's Drive in the Fern Forest subdivision.
Upon the arrival of emergency crews, a male hiker called into 911 by cell phone reporting that he had been hiking on the Kahaualeʻa Trail since 10:00 am Sunday morning and got disoriented and need assistance getting back out to the trailhead on Captain's Drive. Hiker remained in place until emergency crews arrived in the area and continued to remain on the line with 911 dispatchers.
Once emergency crews arrived on the scene, Chopper 1 began aerial survey and search of the Kahauale'a Trail for the hiker. Heavy fog in the area had hampered search efforts, however, rescue crews aboard Chopper 1 were able to locate the male approximately 3/4 mile from the trailhead and Chopper 1 airlifted the hiker back to a landing zone near the trailhead. The male hiker was uninjured and did not require further medical attention.
HFD crews remind the public to familiarize themselves with the terrain and weather conditions. Also, to have sufficient food, water, clothing, and fully charged cell phone prior to setting out on any outdoor adventures.