Investigators say an early-morning fire that caused $225,000 worth of damage to a North Shore Shark Adventures tour boat Jan. 24 was caused by arson, according to a Honolulu Star Advertiser report.
Two of the company's boats have now been damaged in fires this January while docked at Haleiwa harbor, according to the report. The bridge and cabin areas of both boats were damaged in the fires. No one was aboard either vessel.
Two shark tour companies operate out of the Haleiwa harbor on Oahu's north shore, North Shore Shark Adventures and Hawaii Shark Encounters, and both have faced heightened scrutiny in recent years due to the ongoing debate surrounding the practice of feeding sharks and its impact on the animal's behavior.
Charges were dropped Jan. 23 against five current and former shark tour employees who were accused of feeding sharks in state waters. The dismissals came after federal officials refused to provide information about the device used to track the shark tour boats, according to the Star Advertiser.