Dramatic Search for a European Visitor on Oahu
Swept into the ocean at Waimea Bay, Oahu, Hawaii
Haleiwa, HI: A European visitor on Oahu, Hawaii was swept out to the ocean and still missing after 24 hours. Tourists on a circle island drive from Waikiki to the Northshore today found Waimea Bay closed.
Helicopters were circling, a large team of rescue teams searched the rough waters around Waimea Bay for Hanna Wanerskog, a 20-year-old Swedish visitor.
On Friday at 6.30 pm Hanna was standing on the beach at Waimea Bay with two other people early Friday evening when all three were overcome by a rogue wave and were swept out. The two people with her made it back to shore.
Warning signs not to enter the ocean are everywhere. The beauty of Waimea Bay puts some visitors at ease- and this can be dangerous. Lifeguards remind visitors but do not really enforce.
The North Shore is known how currents can pop up by surprise and how underwater currents can pull even champion swimmers out into the ocean without a chance to swim against them. The best advice is to let the current take you out and not fight it.
Wanerskog was in Hawaii on a three-month internship with the nonprofit Surfing the Nations. Surfing The Nations facilitates life-changing training programs and outreach trips globally. Her internship class had 30 members. Hanna and some of her group went to Waimea Bay to celebrate a birthday.
The North Shore is known for surf and monster waves in the winter.