In brief | Big Island | 2-24-14


Red Cross helping Ocean View fire victim

Hawaii Red Cross volunteers assisted the individual affected by a recent fire in Ocean View.

Volunteers met with the person who was not identified to ensure that their emergency needs were met and provided assistance with food, clothing and bedding. Caseworkers will continue to follow up with the individual in the coming weeks to provide referrals, guidance, or additional assistance as needed to help with the recovery process, according to the American Red Cross Hawaii State Chapter.

The Red Cross encourages all families to make a disaster plan to include an evacuation plan with two different routes of escape, a communications plan to help families reconnect after disaster and a disaster supplies kit that is readily available to aid in a quick evacuation. Information on developing a family plan is available at redcross.org or a brochure can be requested by calling 734-2101.

The Red Cross is a nonprofit humanitarian organization that provides assistance to meet the immediate emergency needs of those affected by disasters. All Red Cross assistance to disaster victims is free.

Volunteers tallied 297 whales during count

Approximately 900 volunteers gathered data from Oahu, Kauai, and Hawaii Island shores during Saturday’s annual Hawaiian Islands Humpback Whale National Marine Sanctuary Ocean Count.

The count is a yearly shore-based census that provides snapshot data on humpback whales. Participants tally humpback whale sightings and document the animals’ surface behavior during the survey.

Volunteers collected data from 58 sites statewide. A total of 297 whales were seen during the 9:30 a.m. to 9:45 a.m. time period, the most of any time period throughout Saturday’s count. The calm water conditions were great for spotting whales and other marine wildlife, although conditions were hazy in many areas, according to the sancutary.

Preliminary data detailing whale sightings by site location is available at sanctuaryoceancount.org/resources.

One more Sanctuary Ocean Count is scheduled to take place March 29. To participate, visit hawaiihumpbackwhale.noaa.gov or sanctuaryoceancount.org or call 268-3087.

The sanctuary is administered by a partnership of NOAA’s Office of National Marine Sanctuaries and the state through the Department of Land and Natural Resources. It protects humpback whales and their habitat in Hawaiian waters where they migrate each winter to mate, calve and nurse their young.

Maui man arrested in meth trafficking case

LAHAINA, Hawaii — Maui police say a Lahaina man has been arrested and charged with methamphetamine trafficking following search of his home.

Police say the search at 41-year-old Paea K. Faleta’s home on Thursday turned up more than eight grams of crystal meth, drug paraphernalia and two shot gun rounds.

Faleta faces additional counts, including promoting a dangerous drug and storing ammunition.

Bail was set at $17,200.

It wasn’t immediately clear whether he has retained an attorney.

By local sources