Hawaii Island News, 29 January 2012 through 30 January 2012


Here are the stories I’m following through Monday, 30 January 2012:

Reed’s Island bridge will cost almost $7 million; proposed bill would mandate helmets for skateboarders; more equipment coming to ocean rescue personnel.

Sources cited in this summary include the Associated Press, the “Hawaii Tribune-Herald”, Stephens Media, and “Hawaii 24/7.”

COSTLY BRIDGE TO REED’S ISLAND

(Hawaii Tribune-Herald).  Hawaii County expects it will cost $6.9 million to reinforce Hilo’s Reed’s Island bridge so the wooden arch can hold fire trucks and other large vehicles.  The bridge has a foundation more than a century old and is capable of withstanding a six-ton vehicle.  Project engineer Robert Yanabu of the county’s Department of Public Works says that load rating will be boosted to 20 tons by replacing the wooden surface with steel beams and decking, adding concrete anchors to the foundation, and installing lateral bracing.  According to a background document from the Department of Public Works, those steps will allow the bridge to handle emergency vehicles, withstand earthquakes, and extend the service life of the bridge.

BILL MANDATES HELMETS FOR SKATEBOARDERS

(Stephens Media).  A bill that would require children on skateboards to wear helmets is making its way the Hawaii State House of Representatives.  The proposal from Oahu state representative Linda Ichiyama is much stricter than an existing state law that requires bicyclists of all ages to wear helmets while they are riding on public property or face a civil fine of $25.  House Bill 2276 requires anyone 16 years old or younger to wear a helmet while they are skateboarding or their parents face a fine of $50 to $250.  Ichiyama said, “I wanted it to be as broad as possible”, noting that she wanted to raise awareness of the dangers of skateboarding without a helmet.  Recently, an 11-year-old boy in Ichiyama’s district was injured when he hit a vehicle while he was skateboarding.  That incident prompted her to introduce the bill.

MORE EQUIPMENT COMING TO OCEAN RESCUE TEAMS

(Stephens Media/”West Hawaii Today”).  Neil Swartz owes his life to an alert  lifeguard at Kahaluu Beach Park in Keauhou.  Earlier this week, the Montana native was struggling to swim 50 yards off Kahaluu Beach Park when lifeguard Ricky Alvarez reached him and helped him to shore.  To show his gratitude and thanks, Swartz made a cash donation to the nonprofit Daniel R. Sayre Memorial Foundation, which works year round to supply the Hawaii County Fire Department with the equipment it needs.  The foundation was created by Mallery-Sayre and her husband, Frank Sayer in 1997 after their son Daniel died in a hiking accident at Kapaloa Falls in Pollu Valley.  Because the fire department there didn’t have ropes long enough to repel some 500 feet and other required equipment, 10 hours passed before rescue personnel were able to recover Daniel’s body.  At a Saturday ceremony, the rescued Montana resident said, “it wasn’t a big scene, or the big drama thing, but it was really special…I am very grateful to these people.  I don’t even know how to explain it.”  A couple dozen people, along with about 20 members of the Hawaii Fire Department, went down to the beach to take part in the giving of an array of equipment to the department’s Ocean Safety Division.  Donated by the foundation to the Ocean Safety Division on Saturday was $10,000 worth of equipment, including four rescue boards. two automated external defibrillators, four binoculars, and eight megaphones.  If you would like to help the foundation, please visit danielsayre-foundation.net.

STATE OF HAWAII NEWS BRIEFS FROM THE ASSOCIATED PRESS

Authoritie say one man was stabbed to death, three others were seriously hurt, and a suspect is under arrest after a brawl at a Honolulu public housing complex.  One victim died at the hospital, another is in critical condition, and two others are in serious condition.  Police Major William Chur says all four vitims were apparently stabbed and there were probably more peo;e involved in the Friday night melee at the Mayor Wright Homes housing complex.  The identities of the victims were not immediately released.

The U.S. Coast Guard has suspended its aerial and water search for a missing Maui kayaker.  Fifty-five-year-old Torry Durrell’s kayak was found about 200 yards off Kalepolepo Beach Park on Tuesday.  Coast Guard crews covered a total of 272 square miles during the search.

NOTICE TO HAWAII COUNTY MOTORISTS

Haili Christian School in Hilo will hold its Ho’olaule’a on Saturday, 04 February, from 9:00 a.m.  a.m. to 2:00 p.m.  Because of fundraising activities at the school, the Hawaii County Police Department will close Ululani Street from the school gym to the end of the street intersecting with Haili Street.  The road closure will run from 5:30 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.  For details, call 961-5026.

NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE HAWAII ISLAND FORECAST THROUGH MONDAY, 30 January 2012:

Hilo and vicinity–Partly sunny with a few windward showers.  Mostly cloudy at night with a few showers.

Kailua-Kona and vicinity–Mostly sunny and hazy.  Expect a few showers upslope by early evening.

Highs near 80.  Lows near 64.  Winds shifting to the east south east by Monday, 8 to 16 mph.  Sunrise Monday–6:56 a.m.  Sunset Monday–6:11 p.m.  Hilo tides–high tide at 6:38 a.m./10:02 p.m.  Low tides–1:39 a.m./2:03 p.m.

KBIG-FM/NATIVE-FM HAWAII ISLAND SURF FORECAST THROUGH MONDAY, 30 January 2012:

Hapuna Beach breaks–flat to 1 foot.  Kona and Banyans–1 to 2 feet.  Ka’u and Pohoiki–5 to 6 feet.  Hamakua–4 to 5 feet.  Hilo and Honolii–2 to 3 feet.

For the latest in current events, sports updates, and entertainment news, visit kbigfm.com, nativefm.com, kaparadio.com, and espnhawaii.com.  For more state and local news, go to the righthand side bar under “Hawaii 24/7 News.”

Thanks for dropping by!

Russ Roberts, editor

Laupahoehoe, Hawaii–along the beautiful Hamakua Coast

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