Kauai beachgoers saved three people from drowning in waters off Kauapea Beach on Tuesday.
Officials say a 42-year-old Austrian man initially found himself in distress, which prompted a 24-year-old Kilauea man to help him. Then a 50-year-old Kauai woman entered the water after seeing the men both struggle.
Firefighters say upon their arrival, they found nearly a dozen beachgoers had formed a human chain to pull the two swimmers back to shore.
â€œThe quick-thinking and cooperation of this group of strangers likely saved three people from drowning on Tuesday,â€ fire chief Robert Westerman said. â€œThe rescue tube placed at Kauapea had apparently been damaged. The lanyards were cut off, making it unsafe for anyone to use in a rescue. This is yet another example of how vandalism hurts our entire community.â€
Fire crews were able to help the third swimmer from the water.