Lavaman Waikoloa Triathlon competitor hospitalized

  • 1715674_web1_IMG_0136.jpg
  • 1715674_web1_copy_IMG_0136.jpg

A man was transported to North Hawaii Community Hospital in critical condition after suffering an apparent medical condition while competing in the Lavaman Waikoloa Triathlon on Sunday morning.

ADVERTISING


A man was transported to North Hawaii Community Hospital in critical condition after suffering an apparent medical condition while competing in the Lavaman Waikoloa Triathlon on Sunday morning.

The incident occurred about 7:50 a.m. at the halfway mark of the swim portion of the event at Anaehoomalu Bay in South Kohala. The 52-year-old man was visiting from Canada for the race, however, no further information was available on his identity.

According to race officials, water patrol heard the man trying to signal for help before he lost consciousness. He was quickly transported to shore via jet ski. The Lavaman medical team started performing CPR while waiting for medics to arrive.

A Hawaii County Fire Department official said medics were able to get the man’s heart beating before transporting him in critical condition to the hospital.

Race officials said there were no signs of a drowning.

“He was pulled out of the water immediately and our team acted very quickly once he was on shore,” Lavaman Race Director Gerry Rott said. “We did everything we could do, and I hope it was enough.”

Lavaman uses upward of 50 water patrol volunteers during the race, many with medical backgrounds. It is the first serious medical incident to occur in the 19-year history of Lavaman.

The rest of the race went as planned, with nearly 1,500 participants completing the Olympic Distance (1.5 kilometer swim, 40-kilometer bike, a 10-kilometer run) course.

ADVERTISING


Among them, triathlon veteran and three-time Lavaman champion Tim Marr. Marr said he has seen similar incidents occur during his racing career.

”It is very unfortunate but it can happen in races,” Marr said. “At the start of the race, you are revved up so high it can bring out any kind of heart problem that is hidden.”