Friday, November 30, 2001

The owner of this 47-foot catamaran, the Zip-Purr, was attempting to retrieve it last night. The vessel had been lost at sea since rough weather separated it from its Maui mooring Monday.

2 men to leap
from chopper to
retrieve drifting boat

The catamaran broke free of its
moorings during rough weather

By Gary T. Kubota`

LAHAINA >> Two Maui men dropped out of a helicopter into the ocean off Kalaupapa, Molokai, yesterday to retrieve a catamaran that had broken loose from its mooring off Kaanapali, Maui.

John Rawson, a manager of Green Water Inc., which owns the 47-foot Zip-Purr, said he and Captain Cory Robinson were to don life vests and snorkel gear in the effort to board the vessel.

Before leaving yesterday afternoon on the helicopter, Rawson said he hoped to have the Zip-Purr back in Lahaina Harbor by late last night.

Earlier yesterday, Robinson was flying in a private airplane flown by Ian McKelvey when he spotted the Zip-Purr drifting five to seven miles northwest of Kalaupapa.

The catamaran, which broke its mooring in high winds and waves Monday night, was one of several Valley Isle vessels that broke free during this week's stormy weather.

While trying to find the Zip-Purr, Rawson and Robinson discovered the 50-foot ketch Splash drifting five to seven miles off Kapalua Point on Maui Tuesday morning. Rawson and Robinson used a power boat to help the ketch's Maui owner retrieve the vessel.

Rawson said he thought he had found the Zip-Purr when he initially saw the ketch and that he was relieved to finally spot the Zip-Purr, which is used for dive charters and employs five people including himself.

"It's a happy ending, thank God," Rawson said.

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