(Saturday October 26th 2002)–Some Pipeline regulars paid a heavy toll today as several surfers received season ending injuries, while others were let off with a mere spanking. Leading the list with the most serious wipeout was Liam McNamara. The primed goofyfoot sustained a broken right femur after pearling during a late drop. McNamara landed awkwardly on the face of the wave before being compressed onto the shallow reef. North shore lifeguards were on the scene immediately stabilizing McNamara before air lifting the goofyfoot to Queen’s hospital in Honolulu.
Sean Moody suffered a broken fibula to the lower right leg after colliding with his surfboard while paddling out at Backdoor. Mickey Mitchell, who was having the session of a lifetime at the ‘Door, ripped his knee up on a sick wave. Earlier in the day, Tai Van Dyke’s experienced a vicious wipeout that sent him head first into the reef resulting in 16 staples. Also, Mark Rocheleau, a UH student and a well respected paddler (Outrigger Canoe Club member), sustained a severe splintering to his upper lip along with many bodily abrasions on yet another wipeout at Backdoor. Not to be outdone in the “surfer against board category”, hot big wave charger Mark Healy received a 3-inch long gash on the arch of his left foot.
Excitement reigned at Pipe. There were many great waves surfed today, and some of the many outstanding surfers who are already in mid-season form include Ruben Tejada (backside barrel of the day), closely followed by Braden Dias’ sick pit. Tory Barron’s displayed Backdoor expertise, as well as Mickey Mitchell, while Pipe stalwarts such as Tamayo Perry, Kalani Chapman, and Derek Ho got theirs–as usual.
A big mahalo to the North Shore Lifeguards who worked hard to make sure everyone received the best possible first responder medical attention available.
Much Mahalos & surf safe–Mick O’Brien with courtesy from The North Shore Lifeguard Association