[Haleiwa, Oahu, Nov 23, 2018] On Nov. 30 – Dec 2, the Big Wave Risk Assessment Group (BWRAG) will hold its premier annual event, the Hawaii Safety Summit, on the North Shore of Oahu for the eighth consecutive year. The 2018 BWRAG Hawaii Safety Summit will be held at Turtle Bay Resort, with Breath Hold Training at the Pupukea Boy Scouts Camp, and will be led by BWRAG team members Brian Keaulana, Pat Chong Tim, and Danilo Couto.
The annual BWRAG Hawaii Summit takes place every winter on the North Shore of Oahu and is not just a training, but also an opportunity for the big-wave community to assemble and share ideas, experiences, and goals to progress the sport and big-wave safety.
The two-day Level 2 course is open to all surfers interested in gaining experience in waves of consequence and will include both classroom and in-water training. An optional third day will be available for the recreational thrill craft certification and tow-in/high surf thrill craft endorsement, certifications required by the Department of Land and Natural Resources to operate a thrill craft in high surf.
“The BWRAG Summit is about bringing people together and the sharing of knowledge,” said Brian Keaulana. “We must value life and one another so we want to share our values so that others can live these values as we do,” he added. “We are one family – separated by land, but connected by water.”
Day 1 of the Summit (Friday) will take place in the Hawaii Conference Room at Turtle Bay Resort, and will comprise of classroom training on Ocean Risk Management (ORM), led by legendary waterman and water safety pioneer Brian Keaulana, CPR/AED training led by Pamela Foster, president of the AED Institute of America, presentation of the annual BWRAG Lifesaving Awards, medical-interventions training led by big-wave surfer and paramedic Andrea Moller, an inflation vest presentation led by Patagonia, and a presentation by Surfline and NOAA on new forecasting technology.
Day 2 (Saturday) will focus on in-water training, beginning with a morning session at the pool at Boy Scouts Camp in Pupukea, where proper breathing and breath-hold theory and dynamic breath-hold training will be covered. In the afternoon, in-ocean training will take place at Turtle Bay North Beach, covering jet-ski pickups of conscious and unconscious surfers, as well as surfboard rescue of unconscious surfers.
Day 3 (Sunday) will host the optional recreational thrill craft certification, led by Ian Akahi Masterson of the Hawaii Ocean Education Academy. Instruction will include the recreational thrill craft operator safety education course, ocean safety educational course and ocean safety technician training. Completion of these courses earns attendees the DLNR license to operate a thrill craft as well as the DLNR tow-in/high surf warning thrill craft endorsement, both State of Hawaii certifications issued by Windward Community College. (You must complete Days 1 and 2 to be eligible for this course, in addition to the NASBLA safe boating course. See BWRAG website for details.)
The first BWRAG summit was held in a barn on Kohl Christensen’s property on the North Shore of Oahu. Since then, BWRAG summits have evolved into multi-day seminars held on the North Shore every December, where male and female big-wave surfers from around the world convene to refine their safety knowledge, learn CPR and basic life saving, conduct in-water training, and discuss issues affecting safety in the big-wave arena.
Today, BWRAG is expanding this training around the globe, partnering with local organizations and safety experts in countries like Ireland, Portugal, Australia, Chile, and Peru. Most recently, BWRAG conducted its first-ever summit in Puerto Rico, gathering the local surf community to establish valuable safety protocols.
BWRAG Level 1 certification is a prerequisite for purchasing the Patagonia PSI Vest. A certificate of completion is given to each participant and can be presented to purchase the vest.
Registration for the 2018 BWRAG Hawaii Summit ($400, additional $200 for thrill craft course) is open until Nov. 30 and can be done through the BWRAG website (www.bwrag.com/hawaii-2018.