Stricken with hypothermia, 2 hikers are rescued from Haleakala

Published: May. 6, 2019 at 7:12 AM HST
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HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - Two hikers who got lost in Haleakala National Park are recovering Sunday after braving harsh weather conditions for at least two hours.

The hikers who are both in their 30s called for help on a cell phone after getting lost. MFD said fire crews were dispatched to the park around 8:30 p.m. near the summit’s visitor center.

When they arrived on scene just before 10 p.m., they began searching for the pair.

Weather conditions quickly became a challenge as the front that moved through the state Saturday brought strong winds and rain to Maui. MFD also said that the temperature in the park dipped to about 40 degrees, without windchill.

Video of the rescue shared with Hawaii News Now showed strong whipping winds and heavy rain.

Around 10:45 p.m., the pair was located about 500 feet below the visitor’s center.

Fire officials say the hikers were likely suffering from hypothermia.

“They were wet and cold,” said Assistant Chief Val Martin. “We had personnel who tried to get information from them, but they were incoherent and unable to speak. I don’t know how long more they would’ve been able to survive out there.”

They were rushed to an awaiting ambulance for treatment.

This is the second rescue at a national park in Hawaii in the last week.

On Wednesday, a man survived a 70-foot fall from the Kilauea Volcano caldera.

It prompted authorities to remind the public to respect park boundaries and stay in designated areas.

“Visitors should never cross safety barriers, especially around dangerous and destabilized cliff edges. Crossing safety barriers and entering closed areas can result in serious injuries and death,” Chief Ranger John Broward said in a statement this past week.

The man who fell at Kilauea was last listed in stable condition.

This story may be updated.

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