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Sail Safe Guidelines for windsurfing on Maui

Sail Safe Guidelines for windsurfing on Maui

Maui Boardsailing Association

Sail Safe Guidelines for windsurfing on Maui

In the interest of promoting safe and enjoyable windsurfing for everyone on Maui, the Maui Boardsailing Association has drawn up the guidelines for beach and water etiquette and safety. Please respect other beach users, and adhere to these guidelines so we can continue to enjoy this great water sport on our island.


Please Observe the Following Guidelines:

● SWIMMING AREAS marked by buoys. DO NOT sail, launch or jibe within these areas. See attached map for “No Boardsailing” and “Swimming Only” zones.
● SLOW NO-WAKE ZONE – 200 feet from all beaches.
● NO JIBING within 200 feet of all beaches. 200 feet CLEAR ZONE AROUND ALL DIVERS.
● Current WEATHER reports and forecasts.
● DO NOT sail in offshore winds.
● KNOW and COMPLY with ALL NAVIGATION rules applicable to sail powered craft.
● DO NOT sail in areas or conditions which EXCEED your SAILING SKILLS.
● The Hookipa 5 man rule at Middles and 10 man rule at H’Poko.
● TO ALL swimmers, snorkelers, divers, surfers, fishermen and waterstarters.
● TO SAILOR on starboard tack.
● USE CAUTION in areas shared by divers, swimmers, snorkelers, and fishermen as they have right of way.
● MOVE your rig at least 40 feet from water’s edge.
● PREVENT “FLY-AWAYS” – Secure your rig at all times.
● NO BOARDSAILING at Baldwin Beach or Paia Beach Park.
● NO SAILING at Kanaha or Camp One before 11:00 am (With exception for beginners).
● To protect our whales, the law requires that you maintain a safe distance from them: KIHEI – minimum 100 yards Violators of this law are subject to a maximum fine of $25,000.

Maui’s beaches and ocean environment belong to everyone. Be safe, considerate, and keep beach areas clean of litter and trash. SAIL-SAFE – MAUI STYLE
415 Dairy Road, Suite A Kahului, Maui, HI 96732


  1. Promote the “Sail Safe” program and educate residents and tourists on “Sail Safe” rules and etiquette.
  2. Promote relations with other ocean users. Develop a program for satisfactory “mutual use” of the ocean, respecting others’ rights and maintaining responsible windsurfing rights.
  3. Accept input, ideas and suggestions from MBA members at regular meetings to solve present and future problems.
  4. Develop and sponsor events for the purpose of uniting the windsurfing community and benefiting the community at large.
  5. Serve as the unified voice, the “spokesperson” for all media, political and community contacts.
  6. Act as forum for the windsurfing community to air views, ideas and suggested actions.
  7. Act as liaison with community and political groups and representatives to further relations and advance responsible use of the ocean and beaches.
  8. Develop an active “Beach patrol Program” for policing rules.
  9. Protect and develop the rights of people who wish to windsurf and to maximize the enjoyment of the sport by developing solutions to growth-related problems.

415 Dairy Road, Suite A, Kahului, Maui, HI 96732


Above guidelines courtesy of   MBA – MAUI BOARDSAILING ASSOCIATION



Lifeguard Alfredo.Lifeguard Jay SniffenKanaha Beach is one of only 3 life-guarded beaches on the North shore. This is because Kanaha is one of the most heavily used beaches on the island. There are several swimming areas there. The most protected is closest to the main lifeguard tower. Swimming in the early morning is best for the calmest water. There are several marked swim zones with buoys. It is not recommended to swim too far from shore. Mornings are best because the trade winds usually make the water choppy around noon. Kanaha is not recommended for snorkeling as the water is usually too turbid (murky). Take care during times of large waves are they make conditions dangerous. Be very careful if people are fishing in the swimming areas. This is often the case. swimming while someone is fishing is not recommended because of the danger of getting hooked, or the increased possibility of encountering unfriendly marine life.

Please always follow the directions of the lifeguards. Lifeguards protect the safety of the public by warning or dangerous conditions and areas. There are designated swim zones that are closely watched by the lifeguards. This is the best place to swim. It also ensures that you will not be bothered by the other water users. If you are unsure of where the swim-zones are, or the weather conditions, then please go up and talk to the lifeguards and ask for their advice. Lifeguards will also be watching the offshore areas and occasionally do rescues of surfers, windsurfers, and kiteboarders, however please note they are not obliged to bring users equipment back to shore. If you venture away from shore, do so at your own risk. Lifeguards at Kanaha have a difficult job monitoring all the different activities and areas.

  • Lifeguards will often only patrol during specific hours usually 8:00am to 4:30pm daily.
  • Outside of these times you will be swimming at your own risk.
  • If you need emergency help call 9-1-1.
  • The lifeguards are on the 911 emergency response system.

*Lifeguards will post red flags post and warning signs to warn the public about dangerous ocean conditions.

Tips for Safer Swimming at Kanaha Beach:

  • Swim in designated swim zones.
  • Stay close to the lifeguards.
  • Never let children swim unsupervised.
  • Never dive headfirst into the water because rocks and debris may cause head and neck injury.
  • Do not go in the water if you are cut or bleeding.
  • Avoid swimming when people are fishing.
  • Avoid swimming when there are waves.
  • If in doubt don’t go out.
  • For the safest swimming experience go to the Kahului Public Pool.
  • Kahului Public Pool – 145 Kaulawahine St, Kahului, HI 96732