KAHULUI — The 10-foot carcass of a dead humpback whale was towed three miles out to sea about 9:30 a.m. today by a boat belonging to the Department of Land and Natural Resources (DLNR) Division of Conservation and Resources Enforcement (DOCARE).
Last evening a harbormaster reported seeing a white sheen on the water and the cruise ship Pride of America was asked to check on it. The captain saw the dead whale about a quarter mile off Kahului harbor, and sharks were seen feeding on it. No action could be taken due to darkness.
This morning lifeguards saw the whale 150 yards off Kaa Point. They closed the beach from the east breakwall of Kahului harbor to the third entrance to Kanaha Beach Park and posted shark warning signs along with a Division of Aquatic Resources staffer.
The DOCARE boat with aquatic and boating staff aboard launched and, with lifeguard help were able to tie onto the whale with ropes. It was towed into the channel and released so currents could move it away from the island.
A flyover by the county fire helicopter did spot several sharks feeding on smaller pieces of whale in the nearshore waters. The beach areas will remain closed until sunset this evening. In the morning an assessment will be done for presence of sharks.