Search turns up no sign of man swept into Kalihiwai waters; Police release identity

Firefighters and lifeguards on Jet Ski head toward 'Anini Beach in search of Phua Chuan Chin Tuesday.
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Firefighters and lifeguards on Jet Ski head toward ‘Anini Beach in search of Phua Chuan Chin Tuesday.

REPORT FROM KAUAI COUNTY – KALIHIWAI – Tuesday’s search for a man who was swept into the ocean off Kalihiwai Point yesterday turned up no sign of him and will continue Wednesday.

Police have identified him as Phua Chuan Chin, age 62, of the Republic of Singapore.


Rescue 3 aboard Air 1 and the U.S. Coast Guard continued an aerial search today from Waikoko to the Kīlauea Lighthouse. Jet skis assisted in a sea-based search with personnel from the Kaua‘i Fire Department and the Ocean Safety Bureau, concentrating on the area in and around Kalihiwai Bay. Detectives with the Kaua‘i Police Department also conducted a visual search of the shoreline near the area where the incident occurred.

According to witnesses, Chin was with three other individuals while walking along the rocky shoreline at around 11:30 a.m. Monday near Kalihiwai Point, just east of the Kalihiwai Bay, when he and another male where swept into the ocean by a powerful wave.

The second male victim was able to make it back to shore and was airlifted via Air 1 out of the area. He was transported to Wilcox Hospital with minor injuries and has since been released.

The incident occurred in a remote location along Kaua‘i’s North Shore during a high surf advisory, which remains in effect for north and west facing shores through Tuesday evening.

During a high surf advisory, the National Weather Service reports that pounding shore breaks and strong rip currents will make swimming difficult and dangerous. Beachgoers are urged to enter the water near a lifeguard tower. For a detailed ocean report and list of lifeguarded beaches on Kaua‘i, visit