State law enforcement officers cited nine hikers on Sunday for trespass at Sacred Falls State Park, where on Mother’s Day 1999 eight people were killed and more than three dozen injured when rocks tumbled down the waterfall’s steep cliffs.

“Though Sacred Falls has signs everywhere, including numerous ones with a QR code connecting to a video, people still come, putting themselves at risk as well as the lives of emergency responders,” Jason Redulla, chief of the Division of Conservation and Resources Enforcement, said in a press release.

“Sacred Falls State Park was closed for good reason after the 1999 tragedy,” he said. “There is simply no way, for anyone, to accurately predict when rocks and boulders will fall. You are gambling with your life.”

Despite trying to get the word out that the park is closed and dangerous, state officials said citations are regularly issued.

Rockfalls are unpredictable, they said, not just at Sacred Falls but at many waterfalls in the state.

The press release from the Department of Land and Natural Resources said two men were hurt 10 days ago when boulders unexpectedly landed in the pool below Lulumahu Falls in the restricted Honolulu Watershed Forest Reserve. One of the victims was taken to the hospital in critical condition, the press release said.

The names, ages and hometowns of the nine people cited Sunday will be released when available, DLNR said.

Not a subscription

Civil Beat is a small nonprofit newsroom, and we’re committed to a paywall-free website and subscription-free content because we believe in journalism as a public service.
 
That’s why donations from readers like you are essential to our continued existence.
 
Help keep our journalism free for all readers by becoming a monthly member of Civil Beat today.

About the Author