Hawaii County Fire Department’s Kailua Station responded Tuesday evening at 6:25 p.m. to an explosion on a commercial Zodiac being launched at Honokohau Harbor.
Fire Department reports say that apparently gasoline fumes below the deck ignited and exploded while the 25-foot Zodiac was being launched for commercial use. The owner/operator, deckhands, and bystanders extinguished the flames with hand-held fire extinguishers. The vessel was said to have an automatic extinguishing system. A male, was taken to Kona Hospital in good condition by the Fire Department’s ambulance. He was talking and walking. He suffered a laceration to his head and singed hairs on his arms and face.
The Fire Department report says damage was around $3,000.
According to the Sea Hawaii Rafting website, Captain Kris Henry has been owner and operator of the company for over 3 years and spent many previous years on the water as both captain and crew for various boat operations.