Hokule'a leaves Yap for Okinawa
The voyaging canoe Hokule'a and its escort boat Kama Hele left the capitol of Yap Wednesday (Hawaii time) for what is expected to be a two-week voyage to Okinawa.
Hokule'a captain and navigator Nainoa Thompson expects the sail to Okinawa will take 12 to 14 days.
He said he was able to set a course north using the sun earlier in the day because the skies on the first night of the voyage were cloudy with squalls. And as the squalls pass, the winds return to light easterlies of 5 to 12 knots, Thompson said.
The Hokule'a crew includes Timi Gillion, Atwood Makanani, Kaiulani Murphy, Dr. Pete Roney, Pomai Bertelmann, Chadd Paishon, Taku Araki and Kana Uchino of Japan, Kaina Hoomalia and Maile Neff.
Box jellyfish close Hanauma Bay
Hanauma Bay was closed for the day at 10 a.m. yesterday after more than a dozen people were stung by box jellyfish.
Between 9 and 10 a.m., about 15 to 18 people suffered jellyfish stings, said Capt. Kevin Allen, of the Ocean Safety and Lifeguard Services Division. Lifeguards helped treat those who suffered stings. No one suffered severe reactions, Allen said.
Because of the shape of the bay, jellyfish get stuck in the area where people swim, and swimmers might be getting stung repeatedly by the same jellyfish, Allen said.
Lifeguards will assess the bay this morning.
Sirens audition for disaster test
The city's emergency management department and state Civil Defense tested new siren technology yesterday as part of plans to upgrade the islands' disaster warning system.
Sirens from three vendors were sounded off Kalaeloa between noon and 2 p.m. Officials will now review each siren's sound quality, ease of programming and maintenance, said John Cummings, spokesman for the city's emergency management department.
The companies were the state's current vendor, Federal Signal Corp., as well as American Signal Corp. and Acoustic Technology Inc. All had sirens able to transmit voice messages, Cummings said.
The state pays for new sirens, and the counties are responsible for maintaining the equipment.
Throughout Hawaii, some 148 more emergency sirens are needed to cover "gap areas" that do not have coverage, according to a list prepared by state Civil Defense.
Homelands class-action suit OK'd
Circuit Judge Victoria Marks certified a class-action lawsuit against the state yesterday seeking monetary damages for alleged breaches of trust by the Department of Hawaiian Home Lands.
The case heads to trial Oct. 1 with most of the 2,721 beneficiaries participating in the case permitted to pursue their claims as a class rather than as individuals.
The suit alleges DHHL and the state breached their trust obligations to native Hawaiians by failing to place them on homesteads in a prompt manner, and imposing rules that made it more difficult for native Hawaiians to benefit from the program.
Beneficiaries have waited an average of 20 years for homesteads, while some on the list have waited more than 40 years. Others have died since the claims review process began.
Coming this weekend in your Star-Bulletin:
Expect to hear greetings of "Hello, Honolulu" when the national touring production of "Altar Boyz" opens at the Hawaii Theatre next week. The show parodies boy bands and Christian bands but manages to do it without being rude.
Business: By focusing on family, a Hawaii Kai business couple has grown their children's play center from a startup into an innovative play center that is 1,000 clients strong and ready for expansion.
Business: Borrowers who are falling behind on their home loans say that red tape and other obstacles are making it more difficult to resolve their problems.
Police, Fire, Courts
CRAIG T. KOJIMA / CKOJIMA@STARBULLETIN.COM
Police investigated an accident yesterday in Kapahulu involving a 67-year-old man on a mo-ped who collided with a sport utility vehicle. CLICK FOR LARGE
Mo-ped rider, 67, is hurt in crash
A 67-year-old man was in critical condition yesterday after his silver mo-ped collided with a sport utility vehicle in Kapahulu.
The crash happened at about 6:18 a.m. at the intersection of Kapahulu Avenue and Mokihana Street.
Police said the SUV, a red 2002 Ford Explorer driven by a 21-year-old woman, was heading makai on Kapahulu and turned onto Mokihana.
The SUV crossed into the path of the mo-ped, which was heading mauka on Kapahulu crossing Mokihana, and the mo-ped crashed into the SUV, police said.
Police said the mo-ped rider, who was not wearing a helmet, was thrown onto the roadway.
He received open head and internal injuries and was taken to the Queen's Medical Center in critical condition, police said.
4 suspects sought in man's stabbing
Police were investigating a stabbing near Thomas Square last night.
Police received a report of a fight near Thomas Square at about 9 p.m. Preliminary information indicated at least one person, a 32-year-old man, was stabbed and was in serious condition after being taken to Queen's Medical Center. Police said there are four suspects, including a juvenile who was arrested.
Roommates' spat leads to arrest
Police arrested a 23-year-old woman who allegedly kidnapped and attacked her former roommate.
The victim, 24, recently moved out of the place the two shared after they began having arguments, police said. At about 10:15 a.m. Wednesday, the suspect found the victim in Kalihi, assaulted her and kidnapped her in the victim's van, police said.
The suspect drove around while assaulting and threatening the victim and then dropped her off, police said. Police later arrested the suspect on suspicion of kidnapping, assault, terroristic threatening and robbery, for allegedly taking the victim's wallet.
Electrical short caused house fire
Fire investigators found that an electrical short in a dishwasher caused a Hawaii Kai house fire, said fire Capt. Terry Seelig.
The fire occurred Tuesday afternoon on Niumalu Loop, causing an estimated $100,000 in damage.
Girl allegedly raped by man, 39
Police arrested a 39-year-old Ahuimanu man for allegedly raping a juvenile girl from December to January.
He was arrested on suspicion of two counts of first-degree sexual assault, and third-degree sexual assault.