Monday afternoon was almost the last Monday afternoon one teen from Oahu ever got to experience after entering a tide pool closed for the winter and getting stranded on the rocks.
Queen’s Bath, located in Princeville, Kauai, is a common attraction for its natural beauty — but in the winter, that beauty is especially dangerous, and the access gate to the popular water feature has been closed since October of last year to prevent exactly this sort of accident.
The path to the pool is still closed, but that didn’t deter one 16-year-old girl from risking her life for a thrill.
When reports came in that a female teenager was trapped on the rocks at around noon on Monday, firefighters, a helicopter and lifeguards on jetskis responded to the scene.
“A 16-year-old Oahu girl violated the closed access to Queen’s Bath — which had been CLOSED to the public since October 2021 — and became stranded and trapped on the rocks at the tidepool,” the Hawaii Fire Fighters Association posted on Facebook on Wednesday.
“This caused #KauaiFF and other first responders to risk their lives in the dangerous and hazardous ocean conditions to rescue her on Monday.
“Hanalei firefighters responded to the scene with personnel aboard Air 1 while lifeguards responded on jetskis and remained on standby outside of the large surf break — A firefighter was able to hike down and swim to the area where the girl was trapped between sets of dangerous waves and bring her to safety.”
The girl was reportedly reunited with her family after she was rescued from the tide pools.
She suffered some lacerations but refused medical treatment, according to a post from the County of Kaua’i.
“We are grateful to our first responders who were able to act swiftly in this extremely dangerous rescue,” Fire Chief Steven Goble said in a statement, according to the Honolulu Star-Advertiser.
“This incident could have easily turned into a devastating outcome. Queen’s Bath remains closed for a reason, and we urge all beachgoers to take these warnings seriously, for yourself and for our first responders who also put their lives at risk.”
Locals commented to express their frustration over the waste of resources, saying they hoped the family was being held accountable for their actions.
Authorities have repeatedly warned that the gate to Queen’s Bath was closed, is closed and will remain closed until further notice.