Kiteboarding rules and safety sailing procedures


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The right of way rules in kiteboarding

When it comes to preventing collisions at sea, kiteboarders are considered in the same category as a sailing boat. Learn how to protect yourself and others against dangerous clashes.

In 1972, the International Regulations for Preventing Collisions at Sea defined the rules and guidelines for all sailing crafts. The oceans and seas are full of vessels, yachts, fishing boats, and cargo ships, so there should be signals and regulation for all.

That is why Colregs (Collision Regulations) were born. Colregs define priorities between sailboats, between sailboats and powerboats, and between power boats. Power boats, as a general rule, must give way to sailboats. Kites and kiteboards are considered sailboats.

Issues like steering, visibility, motor power, size, speed, and maneuverability are taken into consideration every time two crafts approach one another. Since 1972, several amendments have been proposed and approved.


Kiteboarder Conduct

Many people new to watersports may need to be informed about some basic rules that apply to watercraft. These rules are fairly universal and apply to all craft and all locations.

Responsibility: You are responsible for your craft, and you are responsible for any damage or injury it causes.

Safe Conduct: You must always operate your craft in a safe manner that poses no danger to other persons or property.

Proper Lookout: You must always look where you are going, and you are responsible for seeing and avoiding other people and obstacles.

Blocking Access Rights: You must never block another person’s access or impede the progress of another person or watercraft. You have no legal right to block the passage of a craft or person. You do not have the right to tell anyone else where they can or cannot ride, sit, or fish, That is illegal. Only an authorized officer of DOBOR, DLNR, State Police, MPD, etc, have the legal authority to do that.

Reporting Dangerous Operators: Any person can report the dangerous operation of watercraft to MPD, DOBOR (DOCARE), a Lifeguard, or Ranger.

Emergency: When there is a serious threat of injury, or to report any illegal activity, call 9-1-1

Kanaha Beach Parking is Under Threat

Protect Our Access (URGENT): Kanaha Beach Parking is Under Threat: 

The Maui County has a Plan to “improve” Kanaha Park, that would remove the 4 parking areas, relocate available parking eastward, and eliminate all of the near-shore access parking in the western half of the beach park that kiters (and local families/fishermen etc) use. If you do not want to lose this access, then please make your voice heard, and read the comments and sign the Petition here.

Ho’okipa Kite Rules

Ho’okipa Rules

*Access is from launching at Lanes beach west of Hookipa.

These common-sense rules will keep us all safer and create a better rapport with windsurfers and surfers. Be aware of the potential dangers at Ho‘okipa! The wave is powerful, the lineup is small, and the rocks are close. Hookipa is strictly for advanced Kiters only. Know the ROW rules and surfing etiquette before riding there.

Caution: A downed kite will present a danger to those on the inside, so always keep kite in control

Continue reading “Ho’okipa Kite Rules”

County park officials mull access fees

Free entry for everyone at Maui County parks could become a thing of the past.

Last week, the county Cost of Government Commission heard a suggestion to charge park entry fees for visitors and businesses from Vice Chairwoman Annie Alvarado.

“I thought it was something we should have a discussion about,” she said Thursday at a regular commission meeting.

The commission is an advisory panel that reviews existing county procedures and recommends improvements. The Maui County Council would need to approve park entrance fees.

The state charges parking fees at Iao Valley State Monument (although that has been closed following massive flooding in September), and the National Parks Service imposes an entry fee at Haleakala National Park. There are other park entry fees in the state. There’s a $7.50 entry fee at Hanauma Bay on Oahu, although state residents, active members of the military and children 12 years old and younger are free.

County Department of Parks and Recreation Director Ka’ala Buenconsejo said the idea of charging an entry fee at some parks isn’t new.

“It’s always been a conversation that is ongoing,” he told commissioners during a meeting in the mayor’s conference room in the Kalana O Maui Building.

Park fees for services such as rental of community centers and gymnasiums are deposited in the county’s general fund, he said.

If the county were to charge park entry fees, a likely place to start would be at Kanaha Beach Park, a popular and world-renowned windsurfing and kitesurfing beach near Kahului Airport, Buenconsejo said.

The park’s master plan calls for building a guard shack where entry fees could be collected as vehicles pass through.

(Maui News 12/11/16)

Our Responsibilities

Maui has a long history of water sports and ocean users. The beaches and ocean areas are busy with a wide range of activities and user groups. Kiteboarding came along much later than most of these sports and activities so we have had to learn how to fit in. All kiteboarders on Maui need to learn about other user groups, and how to respect them and allow each group to access the ocean freely and interact without any conflict or friction. MKA has helped create rules and guidelines that allow kiteboarders to participate in their sport with our creating a nuisance or hardship on others. We try to remind all kiters, local and visiting that we are part of a larger community and we need to respect the needs of others. Our duty is to inform and educate other kiters and the public that we are governing ourselves in a safe and responsible manner.

Being responsible and respectful water users will help us gain respect in the community, and to maintain our access to the ocean and beaches.