East Oahu residents concerned about boating safety - Hawaii News Now - KGMB and KHNL

East Oahu residents concerned about boating safety

Deane Gonzalez Deane Gonzalez

By Mari-Ela David - bio | email

EAST OAHU (HAWAII NEWS NOW) - The East Oahu community is trying to learn from a boating tragedy that killed a young diver at Maunalua Bay last month.

They held a town hall meeting Tuesday night.

One solution residents brought up was to have the Coast Guard patrol Maunalua Bay and/or set up a neighborhood watch program to monitor activity in the waters.

The town hall meeting was at Hahaione Elementary's cafeteria. Among those  there were Keahi Lum's family, including his mom. They listened as residents shared with DLNR and elected officials their safety concerns. One diver says he nearly died after a boat smashed into his.

"Well basically someone tried to murder me. It's that simple," said Deane Gonzalez, a Hawaii Kai resident. "Me and my dive partner. My dive boat was cut loose while we were 60 feet under water while we were in Maunalua Bay diving."

17-year-old Lum died October 4th while diving off China Walls with two friends. A boat struck the Farrington High School student, injured another diver, the third was not hurt.

Some say one problem is that Hawaii doesn't require a license to operate a boat, so you end up with inexperienced boaters in the water.

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