Two pilots rescued off of Lanai

Two pilots were rescued in waters off of Lanai Saturday evening after they apparently ditched the DA40 Diamond Star aircraft they occupied as it was experiencing engine trouble, the Coast Guard said. 

There were no major injuries reported. The Air Station Barbers Point MH-65 Dolphin helicopter aircrew rescued the pilots eight miles off of Lanai and brought them to awaiting emergency services at the air station, the Coast Guard said. 

“As a watchstander this is the type of outcome we want to see with every case,” said Lt. j.g. Makenzy Karnehm, a Coast Guard Joint Rescue Coordination Center watchstander. “Both the Coast Guard and our partners train together for incidents like this and once the call came in we were able to quickly mobilize a robust response and rescue the pilots.”

At 5:49 p.m., JRCC watchstanders received a report from Honolulu Control Facility stating the aircraft was experiencing engine trouble and was likely going to ditch in the water. 

Watchstanders issued an Urgent Marine Information Broadcast notice to mariners and deployed the Dolphin and Station Maui 45-foot Response Boat-Medium rescue crews.

Once on scene the Dolphin helicopter crew located the two pilots and deployed a rescue swimmer to give aid and hoist the pilots to safety.

Fire crews from Maui and Molokai Fire deployed air and surface assets to aid in the rescue.

The aircraft is reported to have sank and does not present a threat to navigation, the Coast Guard said.

The cause of the incident is under investigation.


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