By Star-Bulletin Staff

Tour copter might have lost power before crash

LIHUE >> A tour helicopter may have lost engine power just before crashing into a mountain last week and killing all five people on board, a National Transportation Safety Board official said yesterday.

"We're looking at signatures consistent with loss of engine power prior to impact," NTSB spokesman Wayne Pollack said.

The power failure could have been caused by several factors, including altitude, fuel contamination or combustibility, officials said.

The engine will be sent to California, where it will be examined by the NTSB, the Federal Aviation Administration and engine maker Rolls-Royce to help determine what caused the accident.

Pollack said the survey of the crash scene on Waialeale Crater has been completed, and about 99 percent of the wreckage has been recovered.

The Jack Harter Helicopters' Bell 206B Jet Ranger crashed about 4,700 feet up the crater and slid down to about the 4,400-feet level, Pollack said.

Army plans briefing Sunday on Makua fire

The Army plans to discuss on Sunday its assessment of the damage caused by last week's Makua Valley brush fire that started off as a "controlled burn" but got out of control.

The Army says the briefing will begin at 9 a.m. at the Makua Military Reservation. Nearly 2,500 acres were destroyed in a blaze that the Army set last Tuesday and that was supposed to have burned only 900 acres by the end of the week. The valley is 4,190 acres.

The Army said last week said it was unable to control the blaze when shifting winds caused it to change direction.

Sunday's briefing, the Army said, will deal with the purpose of the burn, the planning that went into it, the events of the day and the damage caused to the environment, which is the home of many endangered plants and wildlife.

State gets $1.4 million for food stamp savings

The federal government awarded the state Department of Human Services $1,476,790 for achieving a 94.97 percent accuracy rate in administering the Food Stamp Program for 2002, the ninth highest in the nation.

Federal officials said Hawaii earned the "bonus" by lowering its error rate in administering nutrition assistance to 5.03 percent in 2002 from 6.53 percent in 2001, in contrast with the national error rate average of 8.26 percent in 2002.

The department took corrective steps beginning in 1999 to increase accuracy by developing a plan to give workers greater focus, which led to better case management skills and more supervisory reviews.

"We are extremely proud of our workers and their day-to-day efforts in maintaining accurate payments to our clients," said DHS Director Lillian Koller of the more than 600 employees of the Benefit, Employment and Support Services Division and the Management Services Office, Quality Control staff.

The department has brought in more than $15.5 million to the state in such awards since 1982.

Liliha library hosts basic Hawaiian lesson

A free introduction to Hawaiian words is held on the first Wednesday of every month at the Liliha Public Library.

Volunteers from the Program to Preserve Hawaiian Place Names offers the 90-minute lecture at 7 p.m. to acquaint the public with Hawaiian word structures, spelling and pronunciation guidelines, and commonly used words.

For more information, call 948-3299.

Walking tour covers downtown landmarks

The Program to Preserve Hawaiian Place Names presents an informative walking tour of Honolulu's civic center every Wednesday at 2 p.m.

The tour highlights the history of the home of Queen Liliuokalani, Saint Andrew's Cathedral, Richards Street YWCA, Coronation Pavilion and Pohukaina burial mound at Iolani Palace, King Kamehameha statue, the first print shop, Honolulu City Hall and other places of historical interest.

The mile tour starts at the Damien statue at the state Capitol and lasts three hours, ending back at the Capitol.

All participants are advised to be on time. The tour costs $5 per person. For more information, call 948-3299.

State course qualifies driving instructors

People interested in becoming certified driver education instructors to teach teenage drivers may enroll in Driver Education Instructor Training Courses beginning next month on Oahu and the Big Island.

On Oahu the courses will be held from Aug. 8 through Sept. 14. In Hilo the courses will be held from Aug. 9 through Sept. 7. Cost is $700 plus $35 for books.

The first part of the program is an 80-hour course that includes classroom methods, content and principles in teaching driver education. The second part is a 24-hour course that focuses on behind-the-wheel instruction and is designed to prepare educators to teach the laboratory phases of traffic safety education.

For more information, call Gerri Kabei at 235-7428 or visit the state Department of Transportation's Web site at


[Taking Notice]

>> Moanalua High School sophomore Peter Chung and Kamehameha Schools senior Evan Price won scholarships for their short stories in the first annual International Arts Foundation writing contest.

>> Legal Services for Children, a nonprofit legal services agency on the Waianae Coast, has received a grant of $76,000 from the Office of Hawaiian Affairs. The grant will be used to conduct workshops for parents of students with disabilities on the state's special-education law. The Waianae Coast has one of the highest rates of students with disabilities: 18 percent, compared with 11 percent statewide and nationwide.

>> The Hawaii Alliance for Arts Education has been awarded $28,000 from the Partners for Livable Communities, a program of the Ford Foundation, to continue its support of the ARTS at Marks Garage in downtown Honolulu.


Friday, Aug. 01, 2003

>> Leslyn Hanakahi has received the Rita Allen Foundation Scholar's Award. She was mistakenly referred to as "he" on second reference in a "Taking Notice" item on Page A2 Tuesday.

The Honolulu Star-Bulletin strives to make its news report fair and accurate. If you have a question or comment about news coverage, call Editor Frank Bridgewater at 529-4791 or email him at

>> Leslyn Hanakahi, an associate professor at Johns Hopkins University, the Bloomberg School of Public Health, has received the Rita Allen Foundation Scholar's Award for cancer research, a $50,000-a-year award for three years. He is a graduate of the Kamehameha Schools, the University of Hawaii and Yale University.

>> The McKinley High School Foundation has awarded 35 scholarships to the 2003 graduating class, including four $6,000, three $2,500, two $2,000, three $1,250, 17 $1,000 and six $750 awards.

>> The Hawaii Chapter of the American Guild of Organists is awarding scholarships for the 2003-2004 year to Clayton Logue, of Maui, and Edric Tapusoa, Flora Choi, Scott Cayabyab, Rachel deBos and Joey Fala, of Oahu. Tapusoa also was named Aloha Music Club Scholar.

>> Leslie Tam, Frank Sanchez and Bill Yuen were the grand-prize winners of the 13th Palolo Chinese Home's Dynasty Invitational Golf Tournament. The annual fund-raising event subsidizes the care of lower- and middle-income elderly residents of various ethnic groups at the home.

>> Benjamin Johnson, Hilo High School graduate, received a $10,000 scholarship from Office Depot for his four-year participation in the Junior Achievement program.

>> The Thomas H. Gentry Scholarship Program of Gentry Homes Ltd. recently awarded $500 scholarships to graduating seniors from neighborhoods built by Gentry.

The recipients are Lauren Krystal Javier, Jennifer Hisako Kim, Debbie Ann Tanudtanud, James Campbell High School; Charisse R. Horimoto, Jihey Yuk, Amy Chiemi Sakuda, Pearl City High; and Windell Harold Jones, Jacqueline Seaborn, Abegaile Piana Manuel and Rustin Saole, Waipahu High.

"Taking Notice" runs on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays. Please send items to City Desk, Star-Bulletin, 500 Ala Moana, Suite 7-210, Honolulu, HI 96813.

Police, Fire, Courts


By Star-Bulletin staff


4 arrested in drug, firearms violations

Big Island police arrested four people in drug and firearms violations during two routine traffic stops this weekend.

The first arrest took place at 4:07 a.m. Saturday after a Hilo patrol officer observed a defective tail light and stopped a 1988 Toyota sedan with a man and woman inside. While talking to the male driver, the officer saw an unspent bullet in the car. When the driver agreed to a search of the car, the officer found a loaded .22-caliber semiautomatic handgun under the front passenger seat and arrested the driver and his passenger.

Police later discovered 2.5 grams of crystal methamphetamine and more ammunition for the handgun. Both the man and woman were charged with firearms and drugs offenses.

In the second incident, police found 33.5 grams of marijuana and 3.5 grams of "crack" cocaine during a check for liquor violations in a traffic stop at Wailoa State Park on Saturday. Police charged both suspects in that case with drug promotion and possession. Police also seized the vehicles in both cases for forfeiture.


Honolulu Police Department Crimestoppers

E-mail to City Desk


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