Opihi picker dies in apparent drowning


A Caucasian man in his 40s apparently drowned Saturday while opihi picking at the end of OTEC Road in Kona, according to the Hawaii County Fire Department.

The victim reportedly went to pick opihi around 9 a.m. Bystanders later spotted him, floating face down in the ocean, at 3:24 p.m. Fire rescue personnel arrived on the scene at 3:40 p.m. and recovered the man’s body, approximately 100 yards off shore.

Big Island police have not released the identity of the victim pending notification of next of kin.