Surfing legend Laird Hamilton helps rescue 15 young girls stranded after Hawaii floods

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Surfing legend Laird Hamilton came to the rescue of fifteen young girls who were stranded after record rainfall in Hawaii, causing flash flooding and landslides. (KABC)

Surfing legend Laird Hamilton came to the rescue of 15 young girls who were stranded after record rainfall in Hawaii, causing flash flooding and landslides.

The pro surfer, along with his friends, used boats, paddleboards and jet skis to help shuttle people from place to place along the Hanalei River.

More than two feet of rain caused devastating floods on the Hawaiian island of Kauai. Hundreds of people have been evacuated, and it's not clear when they'll be able to return home.

"It's hard to conceive that that much water can come from the sky. I mean, it was like an ocean back there," Hamilton said.

Leila Hurst thanked Hamilton for assisting in the rescue efforts after her daughters were among fifteen girls stranded from the floods during a sleepover camp in a lengthy Instagram post.

"This might be the best picture ever. No, we did not have a fun day on the boat. This is us getting rescued," she wrote in the post.


Kauai residents say they have never experienced this type of intense flooding.

"I've lived here all my life and this storm was pretty gnarly," Kevin Kaleiohi said.

Hanalei resident Flora Quick told CNN she was rescued from her roof by someone on a jet ski. She said the heavy rain flooded her property so quickly that she was forced to go somewhere higher.

RELATED: Record rains, severe floods hit Kauai, Hawaii
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Most of the rain fell in just 24 hours, leading water levels to rise 5-8 feet above the average level along the north shore of the island.



"When the water came in, it only took a few seconds. That's when I decided to climb up," said Quick.

Crews with the U.S. Army, National Guard, Kauai's County fire and police departments, and the Red Cross worked together to bring supplies to the isolated north shore neighborhoods.

About 220 people were airlifted to safety on Monday after the rains subsided.
Related Topics:
weatherfloodingflash floodingrainsafetyrescuewater rescueu.s. & worldHawaii
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