Copter retrieves car that fell in April off national park road

A helicopter crew airlifted a rental vehicle Friday morning that had fallen 250 feet off a Crater Road embankment in April at Haleakala National Park, officials reported.

Around 8:30 a.m., the vehicle registered to Enterprise Rent-A-Car was hauled away from a gulch about a mile above the park’s visitor center, said Polly Angelakis, the park’s chief of interpretation and education.

“It was a safe operation with no damages to park resources or staff,” she said.

On April 23, a North Carolina man and woman were taken to Maui Memorial Medical Center in serious condition after they went over the embankment with the rented car, officials reported. The visitors have since been treated and released by the hospital, park officials said.

Kula and Kahului firefighters responded to the 7:42 a.m. alarm, finding the man and woman sitting on the vehicle, which was on its side. Two park rangers attended to the couple.

The woman complained of neck, back and hip pain, and she had lacerations to her arms and head. The man reported pain to his ribs, and he had a head laceration. Rescue units airlifted the couple to a landing zone at Hosmer Grove, and they were later taken by ambulance to MMMC.