Drownings are the leading cause of death for visitors to Hawaii and have long been a problem in the state. But the numbers have recently spiked: In less than four months this year, the island of Kauai has suffered 11 drownings; that's already close to triple the four deaths seen on the island in all of 2012. And that has some state lawmakers proposing an unusual tactic: enlisting airlines to help.
Hawaii's state Senate is asking airlines to show a video on flights into Hawaii cautioning people about ocean safety. (One such video recently started playing on a loop in the baggage claim area at Kauai's Lihue Airport.) The proposal passed the state Senate this month but is no more than a non-binding statement. It's not clear whether airlines would participate, and even some state lawmakers worry the videos could frighten tourists away. "You don't want to be on a plane and see people getting eaten by sharks," says Rep. Tom Brower.