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Opihi picker found safe

An opihi picker was found safe at Maliko Bay on Thursday morning after being reported missing, a fire official said.

The man, who was in his 50s, had no injuries and refused medical attention, said Fire Services Chief Rylan Yatsushiro.

The man got stranded as large surf pounded the shoreline and stayed put overnight in a safe location. A firefighter escorted the man to safety up a trail Thursday morning, Yatsushiro said.

Firefighters received the alarm at 12:52 a.m. Thursday, and Paia fire and Kahului rescue crews arrived at Maliko Gulch and met with the 911 caller. She said her friend went to pick opihi in the area around 4 p.m. Wednesday and never returned.

Crews made checks in the area as safely and thoroughly as possible in the darkness and amid large surf, Yatsushiro said.

At 3:15 a.m., the search was suspended until first light. When the search later resumed, Rescue 10 on board helicopter Air One spotted the man on the far east end of Maliko Bay, Yatsushiro said.