Tuhiti at Pipe last week. Photo: Brent Bielmann

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Tuhiti at Pipe last week. Photo: Brent Bielmann

Tahitian surfer Tuhiti Haumani is fighting for his life after suffering a bad fall yesterday afternoon in the free-surf that followed the conclusion of the Volcom Pipe Pro. Some reports suggest he banged his head on his surfboard, others say he hit the reef; either way the Volcom team rider lost consciousness, and a strong current meant the lifeguards had difficulties rescuing him. Eventually they were able bring him back to shore, where they immediately commenced CPR. Paramedics were on the scene not long after and continued with the attempts to resuscitate him, managing to find a slight pulse before rushing him away to hospital. He is currently thought to be in a critical condition. This is all the information we have right now, and we will keep you updated on the situation as and when updates arrive.

Tuhiti, who was one of the surfers used as stunt men in the recent filming for Point Break 2 at Teahupoo, is by all accounts a much-loved and well-respected figure on the North Shore. Messages of support have been pouring in on social media. “Praying for @tuhitihaumani stay strong my friend!", posted Jamie O'Brien on his Instagram account. Laurie Towner added the following: “Thinking of you @tuhitihaumani one of Tahiti’s best barrel riders an nicest guy you will meet! He hit his head surfing in Hawaii today. Praying for you mate."

Haumani's unfortunate accident is another reminder of the devastating power of the world's most iconic wave, on a day when the waves were not massive by Pipe standards. Over the weekend young Italian Leo Fioravanti broke two vertebrae during his Round 3 heat, and according to doctors was lucky to avoid permanent damage.

Tahiti with his family