By Star-Bulletin Staff

Saturday, May 29, 1999

Special radios augment
Civil Defense system

By Leila Fujimori, Star-Bulletin

When the state Civil Defense tests the Emergency Alert System on Tuesday, not only will sirens go off, but also some 200 specially equipped radios at various public schools.

Civil Defense official Norman Ogasawara said about 200 AM-FM radios, set up last month, will activate with the official emergency broadcast.

Strobe lights, noisemakers and vibrators may be plugged in to the radios, which alert people to listen to the Civil Defense message.

These devices can aid the hearing impaired and those located outside the range of sirens.

"We don't have 100 percent coverage with the sirens," said Ogasawara, assistant telecommunications officer at Civil Defense.

In many remote areas, he said it is not economical to install a siren for only a few families.

"The EAS receiver may replace sirens in the future," Ogasawara said.

The radios can be installed in homes and businesses, but are not readily available locally.

Civil Defense bought the receivers from a mainland supplier for $80 each. Ogasawara said prices may come down when they gain in popularity and availability.

Campbell Local Emergency Action Network has been prodding the state to come up with a better warning system after chemical releases in 1995 and 1996 at Campbell Industrial Park caused community concern and citation of two refineries, said Helen Mary Wessel, compliance coordinator at the park.

Wessel said CLEAN has tested the alert sentinel radios and is pleased with the results.

Computer glitch halts 911 calls for one hour

The 911 emergency telephone system was out of service for an hour yesterday.

Service was restored at 4:10 p.m. The malfunction was apparently caused by computer software problems and is being investigated by GTE Hawaiian Tel, according to police.

Police, fire department and ambulance services received calls through other telephone lines, and spokesmen said they didn't know of any major emergency that went unanswered during the hour.

There was a power failure in a system that handles 911 circuits, Jim LaClair of Hawaiian Tel said.

The company was investigating to determine why a backup system failed to stop the outage, he said.

Honolulu police dispatchers said they received about 50 emergency calls during the outage. Normally, about 100 calls are received in an hour.

Police officials were to meet Tuesday to discuss what measures should be in place if another such outage occurs, Deputy Police Chief William Clark said.

1,500 attend opening of Kapolei water park

About 1,500 soggy people inaugurated a not-quite-complete Hawaiian Waters Adventure Park in Kapolei yesterday.

Officials of the new $15 million waterpark said they were pleased with the light crowd, as it gave them a chance to shake down the five slides, wave pool and circular, continuous river.

"We didn't want to overbook and have everthing overcrowded," said Brooks Cutter, one of the park's managing directors.

Waterworld, one section of the park, remained closed because of a faulty filter, Cutter said, but the problem was expected to be corrected by today. Waterworld contains several slides meant for younger children, but it does include one of the park's main attractions, the Flyin' Hawaiian, which sends riders down a short slide, then throws them out into mid-air and drops them 6 feet into a pool.

Park hours are 10:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. For information call 674-9283 or visit the Web site,

Symphony musicians receive wage increase

Honolulu Symphony musicians will receive wage increases totaling 3.85 percent over two years in a labor contract settlement reached yesterday.

The base salary for orchestra members will be $25,000 in the first year and $26,000 in the second year of the contract, which takes effect in July. They are paid for a 33-week season which will include six weeks service with the Hawaii Opera Theatre and accompaniment for Ballet Hawaii's presentation of "The Nutcracker" at Christmas.

"The new contract calls for continued monetary sacrifice on the part of musicians," said Scott Janusch, chairman of the Musician's Union negotiating committee. "But it is expected that our sacrifice will allow the organization to further stabilize."

Michael Tiknis, symphony executive director, said the symphony must raise $400,000 by July to meet its 1998-99 budget.

U.S. Coast Guard nabs suspect fishing boat

A fishing boat carrying more than 40 people was stopped about 90 miles west of Guam by the U.S. Coast Guard cutter Morgenthau.

The vessel which has no name or registry was apparently being used to smuggle Asian workers without immigration documentation, according to the Coast Guard.



David Karl, a principal University of Hawaii investigator, was misidentified in a photo cutline yesterday about the Moana Wave's departure on its final cruise.

Police, Fire, Courts


By Star-Bulletin staff

Motorcycle rider, 28, dies in solo crash

A 28-year-old man was killed yesterday after crashing his motorcycle near the Luana Hills Country Club on the Windward side.

The man was traveling west on Auloa Road at 6:28 p.m. when he ran off the roadway and was ejected from his Yamaha motorcycle, police said. The man, who was not wearing a helmet, then struck his head on the base of a light pole.

The man was airlifted to Queen's Hospital where he was pronounced dead 30 minutes later.

Police promptly pinch pram-pushing pilferer

A theft suspect, who was fleeing from security while pushing a baby stroller with two children inside, was arrested yesterday.

The man entered the Duty Free Shop at the Royal Hawaiian Shopping Center in Waikiki at 4:30 p.m. pushing a stroller with two children inside, police said.

Security observed the man taking several watches and stuffing them into his pockets and the stroller.

Calif. man sought here may be armed, dangerous

A California man with armed robbery, burglary and auto theft convictions is being sought in Honolulu through the CrimeStoppers program.

Sacramento authorities issued a parole revocation warrant describing Sefton Wesley, 33, as potentially armed and dangerous. He is also wanted on a criminal contempt warrant for failing to appear in Honolulu District Court in March.

He is 6 feet 2 inches tall and of medium build. He has a slight mustache and a pronounced Adam's apple.

People with information on his whereabouts may qualify for a $1,000 cash reward by calling the CrimeStoppers Hotline, 955-8300, or, from cellular phones, *Crime.

See expanded coverage in today's Honolulu Star-Bulletin.
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