Woman saved after being swept into sea by Hawaii flash flood

WAINIHA, Hawaii (AP) — Hawaii first responders have rescued a woman who was swept out to sea by a flash flood, officials said.

The 49-year-old woman, who was not identified, and two others were attempting to evacuate a Kauai home along the Wainiha River when their boat flipped in the rushing water early Sunday, authorities said.

A flash-flood warning was issued for Kauai as heavy rains began Saturday, officials said.

A man and child reached safety, but the woman became distressed and was swept away, authorities said.

Neighbors downstream heard the woman’s cries for help and called first responders around 12:40 a.m. After a short search, rescue personnel followed the woman’s cries downstream and found her on a shoreline below a cliff, authorities said.

Firefighters climbed down the cliff and rescued the woman, bringing her to waiting medics who treated her for non-life-threatening head injuries, officials said.

State Department of Transportation officials and firefighters transported the injured woman through a flooded and closed portion of Kuhio Highway in Hanalei to Wilcox Memorial Hospital.

A flash-flood watch remains in effect through Monday afternoon, officials said.

“Residents and visitors should monitor the weather and be prepared to take action in the event that a Flash Flood Warning is issued,” authorities said.