by: Stephen Florino
WAIKIKI (KHNL) - According to the Coast Guard, the Na Hoku II was involved in seven different incidents in the past 18-months.
A 13-year old boy was killed on the catamaran Friday afternoon, when the mast broke in half and landed on him. Two women were hurt, one of them critically.
The crew was given drug and alcohol tests, just like after any type of incident like this. Investigators are checking the safety equipment, alarm indicators, and water systems, all to find out what went wrong.
Yellow tape wraps around the Na Hoku II. Her massive 65-foot tall mast is now about half as high. It's just one sign of the tragedy that happened on board.
Krash Nishimura is a skipper on another boat, but worked on Na Hoku for 16-years.
"It does happen and even on the lightest wind days," said Nishimura. "It's nothing, bad seamanship or anything, because this operation, the Na Hoku, has been in operation since 1970."
But it has problems.
The Coast Guard says the Na Hoku II was recently involved in numerous incidents ranging from hull examinations, to what's called "maritime casualty." That can range from the catamaran hitting another vessel, hitting a whale, to someone dying on board.
State officials say records show the catamaran was last inspected in may, and everything is current.
"We will continue to conduct, update our records, work with boaters throughout the state, to make sure they are compliant and safe," said Peter Young, chair of the Department of Land and Natural Resources.
The Coast Guard is leading the investigation, with the state's support. The state DLNR is also conducting its own investigation.
For now, the Na Hoku II will remain locked up until the investigation is completed.