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Newswatch
Star-Bulletin staff and wire

Tuesday, July 12, 2005





Diesel fuel removed from grounded ship

The crew of the Coast Guard cutter Walnut completed removal of nearly 30,000 gallons of diesel fuel yesterday from a research vessel that ran aground in the Northwest Hawaiian Islands National Wildlife Refuge.

The removal was not enough to refloat the 145-foot Casitas, which ran aground on Pearl and Hermes Atoll 10 days ago. A private motor vessel that specializes in fuel removal is on the scene and scheduled to offload today the 3,000 gallons of gasoline and 200 gallons of lubricating oil still on board, said Petty Officer Russ Tippets, Coast Guard spokesman.

All 23 people who were aboard when the Casitas grounded have returned to Oahu. None was injured.

The cause of the grounding remains under investigation.

The Casitas is a privately owned ship chartered by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration for marine debris removal.

Billboards to clarify Likelike closure times

The first weekend of the Wilson Tunnel resurfacing project went well, with minimal complaints, said state Department of Transportation spokesman Scott Ishikawa.

Most of the calls to his office were from people asking about closure times, he said.

However, the Transportation Department is changing the message on the electronic billboards on the Honolulu side to remind motorists that there is no Kaneohe-bound traffic on the Likelike Highway during the weekend.

"Maybe it wasn't clear enough," Ishikawa said.

The Honolulu-bound tunnel is open for morning commuters 4 a.m. to noon weekdays and weekends. The tunnel switches to contra-flow for afternoon commuters heading to the Windward side from 1 to 8 p.m. on weekdays only.

The Kaneohe-bound tunnel will remain closed 24 hours day until Aug. 5, the scheduled completion of the resurfacing.

Pohakuloa gets first female commander

HILO » Lt. Col. Kimberly A. Rapacz has become the first woman to command the Army's Pohakuloa Training Area on the Big Island.

Rapacz, a specialist in communications, came to the 108,793-acre facility from Special Operations Command, Pacific, at Camp H.M. Smith on Oahu.

She will replace Lt. Col. Frederick Clarke, who has commanded PTA since July 2003. He is being reassigned to a new post in Heidelberg, Germany.

East Honolulu areas to lose power tomorrow

Waialae Iki and Kalaniiki Valley residents will have no electricity from 8:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. tomorrow as Hawaiian Electric Co. completes repairs on the circuit damaged by a brush fire on June 24.

The power outage will affect about 300 residents in the area.


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Taking Notice

» The Harry & Jeannette Weinberg Foundation has donated $10,000 to Hina Mauka's Teen CARE program to support alcohol and drug-free outings for adolescents.

» The Board of Trustees of the Office of Hawaiian Affairs has awarded 19 community grants totaling more than $1.2 million to these organizations:

Aka'ula School, $91,700; Blue Print for Change, $105,560; Catholic Charities Hawaii, $100,000; Earthjustice, $50,000; Ho'omau Ke Ola, $40,000; Hula Preservation Society, $72,882; Kaumauoha Foundation, $84,200; Keaukaha Elementary School, $66,008; Life Foundation, $50,000; Maui Arts & Cultural Center, $50,000; Na Kai 'Ewalu Canoe Club, $32,500; Nanakuli High & Intermediate School, $75,226; Olomana School, $44,508; Partners in Development, $44,045; Protect Kaho'olawe Fund, $50,000; Turning Point for Families Inc., $99,925; Waianae Coast Early Childhood Services, $37,500; YMCA Communities in Schools of Hawaii Project, $86,737.

» The American Red Cross, Hawaii State Chapter, has received $100,000 from First Hawaiian Foundation over four years to renovate the headquarters building in Diamond Head.

» The Aloha Chapter of the National Society Daughters of the American Revolution has awarded the Family Library of the Mayor Wright Homes books, puzzles and pencils, and $482 raised in a T-shirt sale.





Police, Fire, Courts

Police/Fire

By Star-Bulletin staff

HONOLULU

2 teens are held in stabbing of guard

Police apprehended two teenage male shoplifting suspects yesterday in the stabbing of a Sears security guard.

They received the call at 4:33 p.m. and caught up with the suspects, 14 and 15, at Ala Moana Beach Park.

The boys allegedly stole two T-shirts, said Sears security supervisor Nelson Toda.

Toda said a loss prevention officer followed the two suspects out of the store, stopped them and escorted them back to the store when the incident occurred.

Police said the boys were beating the guard outside the Old Navy store. One of the boys pulled out a knife and stabbed the security guard in the right shoulder, they said.

An Emergency Medical Services supervisor said the 22-year-old stabbing victim was taken to the Queen's Medical Center in serious but stable condition.

Woman arrested after husband hit with pot

Police arrested a 30-year-old woman after she allegedly struck her husband in the head with a pot early yesterday while he was sleeping.

The victim, 45, had been arguing with his wife at about 2:30 a.m. and then went to bed at their Kalihi Street home, police said.

The wife later went into the bedroom and hit him in the back of the head, causing a laceration, police said.

The husband was taken to the Queen's Medical Center in serious condition.

Mo-ped driver who crashed Sunday dies

A 20-year-old man who was critically injured when his mo-ped collided with a car on June 30 died Sunday.

Police said the victim was Ewa-bound on Waialae Avenue when he collided with a car making a left turn into the Saint Louis School campus. He was taken to the Queen's Medical Center, where he died.

LEEWARD OAHU

Police name teen who died in mo-ped crash

Police identified the 15-year-old boy who died last night in a mo-ped accident in Nanakuli as Thomas Aldosa.

Police said he was traveling along Hakimo Road one-tenth of a mile away from Ulehawa Road about 6:40 p.m. when he lost control of his vehicle, veered off the right shoulder and crashed into a wooden utility pole.

Aldosa was transported in critical condition from Nanakuli Beach Park to Kapiolani Medical Center at Pali Momi, where he was pronounced dead.

Police said he was not wearing a helmet and that speed was a factor in the incident.

It was the 43rd traffic fatality on Oahu this year, compared with 35 at the same time last year.

NEIGHBOR ISLANDS

Kailua-Kona woman dies in 1-car crash

A 45-year-old Kailua-Kona woman died Friday of injuries she suffered in a one-vehicle crash on Kaiminani Drive, about 180 feet west of Ilimano Street in North Kona.

Responding to a 7:45 p.m. call, Kona patrol officers determined that the victim was driving a 1994 Mitsubishi pickup truck east on Kaiminani Drive when the truck ran off the right side of the road, struck a rock wall and overturned. The driver, who was wearing a seat belt, was partially ejected from the vehicle.

Fire rescue personnel took a 33-year-old male passenger in the vehicle to the Kona Community Hospital, where he was treated and released.

Hospital personnel pronounced the victim dead at 11:52 p.m. Her name is being withheld pending notification of the next of kin.

Speed and alcohol are considered factors in the crash, the 17th traffic fatality on the Big Island this year, compared with 24 at the same time last year.

Maui pedestrian, 79, struck by car, killed

LAHAINA » A Valley Isle man died when a driver lost control of his car, crossed the center line and struck the pedestrian as he crossed a West Maui highway.

Arthur F. Paahana, 79, of Lahaina was not in a crosswalk, but the vehicle that struck him is suspected of traveling faster than the 40 mph speed limit, said police Sgt. Barry Aoki.

Aoki said the 18-year-old female driver was not arrested, but police are investigating whether drugs or alcohol were factors in the crash.

The incident occurred at about 6:51 a.m. on Honoapiilani Highway, makai of the Lahaina Civic Center, Aoki said.

Paahana's death was the seventh traffic fatality on Maui this year, compared with nine for the same period last year.



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