By Jeff King
Looking like an eerie and malevolent face peering toward space, the eyes of two hurricanes continue to rumble toward the Aloha State. Picture the image here – with Hilo just barely out of frame in the path of Madeline. As of 6 a.m. today, Kahului stands a 31 percent chance of encountering tropical storm conditions. At the very least, Maui and the Big Island will see large rainfall amounts, damaging east-shore surf and surge and high winds. Then there will be Lester, expected to pass by slightly north of Maui – which could bring high winds from the southwest and south.
Maui weather guru Glenn James offers the lastest and most accurate information on storms like these. Follow his track here.
Updated expected impacts from hurricane Madeline for Maui county and the Big Island, along with new wind speed probabilities based on the latest information provided in the 5 am Central Pacific Hurricane Center (CPHC) advisory.
Hurricane Madeline is forecast to approach the state from the east through tonight, with the latest Central Pacific Hurricane Center forecast bringing Madeline very close to the Big Island Wednesday through early Thursday. Based on the current track, strong damaging winds and very heavy rainfall is likely across the Big Island and Maui county. In addition, large and damaging surf is expected along east facing shores of the Big Island and Maui. Surf will begin to rise this afternoon, and reach dangerous levels later tonight through Wednesday night.
The chance for tropical storm conditions at Hana is 35 percent, at Kahului is 31 percent, at Lanai city is 32 percent, and at Kaunakakai is 25 percent. The onset of tropical storm conditions could occur as early as late Wednesday afternoon or Wednesday evening.
Although changes are still possible, the latest forecast is for sustained winds to remain below tropical storm force of 39 mph. Only a slight change in track to the north, could result in tropical storm force winds across portions of Maui county.
Large and damaging surf is expected along east facing shores of east Maui. Surf will build today, and peak at 12 to 18 feet tonight through Wednesday night. This may cause significant wave runup or damage to coastal properties and infrastructure, including roadways. Powerful longshore and rip currents will be present at most beaches. Large breaking waves and strong currents may impact harbor entrances and channels causing challenging boat handling. Although surf heights will be lower along east facing shores of west Maui and Molokai, surf heights will reach advisory levels of 5 to 9 feet tonight through Wednesday night.
For those under a warning, your preparations to protect life and property should be rushed to completion. In a tropical cyclone, conditions can change quickly. Evacuate if directed to do so by local officials, or if your home is vulnerable to high winds or flooding. Cancel any beach activities until further notice. Persons living near the shore should be prepared to evacuate quickly should building surf threaten.
People under a watch should continue making preparations and listen for possible warnings.
Closely monitor NOAA weather radio or other local news outlets for official storm information. Listen for possible changes to the forecast.
Loose objects such as lawn furniture, garbage cans, and other items should be secured or stored indoors. Have supplies on hand and be ready for power outages. Evacuate if ordered by local officials.
The next local statement will be issued around 12:30 pm HST today, or sooner if conditions warrant.
By Jeff King
Tropical Storm Oho is going the wrong way.
The system has been a highly unusual one since it began forming last week. Early autumn storms along the area known as the Intertropic Convergence Zone usually travel east to west just north of the equator. Oho has been inching north and northeastward.
As of 8 a.m. today, Oho is about 500 miles south of Hana, moving toward the west northwest at 11 mph. The storm is expected to turn sharply to the northeast at some point. Some forecasts have Oho gaining hurricane strength as she exits stage right. Others show the storm remaining intact as it traverses the eastern Pacific all the way to British Columbia.
Meanwhile, the system is inching closer to the islands of Maui County than expected. The Central Pacific Hurricane Center has yet to revise their prediction but – as Maui Weather Guru Glenn James has warned several times about Oho, “…It would be wise to pay close attention to this rather dramatic change in weather, as we move forward.”
While surf will likely build rapidly (and sloppily…if that’s a word) along south and west shores, The National Weather Service has continued the HIGH SURF ADVISORY for North & East Facing shores of MOLOKAI and MAUI, in effect until 6:00 p.m. today
A High Surf Advisory means that high surf will affect beaches in the advisory area, producing rip currents and localized beach erosion.
EFFECTS: A large north-northeast swell will keep elevated and rough surf along north and east facing shores through this evening. Expect surf along north facing shores of 12 to 16 feet today. Expect surf along east facing shores of 6 to 10 feet. Forecast surf heights are estimates of the height of the face or front of waves.
PRECAUTIONARY MEASURES: EXPECT STRONG BREAKING WAVES, SHORE BREAK, AND STRONG LONGSHORE AND RIP CURRENTS, MAKING SWIMMING DIFFICULT AND DANGEROUS. BEACHGOERS, SWIMMERS, AND SURFERS SHOULD HEED ALL ADVICE GIVEN BY OCEAN SAFETY OFFICIALS AND EXERCISE CAUTION.
INFORMATION: Maui Civil Defense Agency will continue to monitor the situation. Please listen to your local radio and TV stations or NOAA Weather Radio for any updates. NOAA Weather broadcasts can be reached by calling 1-866-944-5025. NOAA Weather internet services can be found at www.weather.gov/hawaii.
Pre-recorded advisories and notifications are available 24-hours a day on the Maui County Automated Information System (AIS) by calling 986-1200. This same notification can be found on the Maui County website at www.mauicounty.gov.
Let’s be careful out there.
By Jeff King
That historical tableau of typhoon and two hurricanes framing Hawai’i remains.
Glenn James of Maui Weather Today provided an image taken this morning from the International Space Station of the trio of Typhoon Kilo, Hurricane Ignacio and Hurricane Jimena.
While history continues to be made in Central Pacific weather – including an unprecedented string of record high temperatures, it’s current events that should not be overlooked.
The National Weather Service has ISSUED a FLASH FLOOD WATCH for MAUI COUNTY in effect until midnight tonight.
A Flash Flood Watch means that conditions may develop that lead to flash flooding.
EFFECTS: Scattered heavy showers and thunderstorms may produce locally excessive rainfall today and tonight.
A very moist air mass, together with a trough of low pressure in the middle atmosphere overhead has been encouraging locally heavy showers and thunderstorms to develop during the night. Although most of the heaviest precipitation remained offshore, rainfall locally saturated the soil overnight.
Showers and thunderstorms are expected to cover only a portion of the state at any one time, but local impacts could be significant and training showers may permit heavy rain to continue at individual locations for extended periods of time. Shower and thunderstorm development is expected to increase in the afternoon and early evening.
Also, around 8:30 a.m. today, the National Weather Service ISSUED a FLOOD ADVISORY for MAUI in effect until 11:30 a.m.
A Flood Advisory means that nuisance flooding is occurring or imminent. A Flood Advisory may be upgraded to a Flash Flood Warning if flooding worsens and poses a threat to life and property.
This advisory may need to be extended if heavy rain persists.
EFFECTS: At 8:18 a.m. radar showed heavy rain 6 miles west of Hana, or about 26 miles east of Kahului. The area of heavy rain was nearly stationary. Other locations in the advisory include but are not limited to Pauwela, Nahiku, Makawao, Keanae, Huelo, Haliimaile and Haiku.
PRECAUTIONARY MEASURES: STAY AWAY FROM STREAMS, DRAINAGE DITCHES AND LOW LYING AREAS PRONE TO FLOODING. RAINFALL AND RUNOFF WILL ALSO CAUSE HAZARDOUS DRIVING CONDITIONS DUE TO PONDING, REDUCED VISIBILITY AND POOR BREAKING ACTION. DO NOT CROSS FAST FLOWING OR RISING WATER IN YOUR VEHICLE OR ON FOOT. TURN AROUND…DON’T DROWN.
INFORMATION: Maui Civil Defense Agency will continue to monitor the situation. Please listen to your local radio and TV stations or NOAA Weather Radio for any updates. NOAA Weather broadcasts can be reached by calling 1-866-944-5025. NOAA Weather internet services can be found at weather.gov/hawaii.
Oh – and don’t forget – that high surf warning for east shores of Maui and Moloka’i remains in effect until at least 6 p.m. today. Wave faces up to 10-15 feet are possible.
HONOLULU — The Coast Guard Captain of the Port continues to closely monitor the movement of Hurricane Ignacio and based on the storms current trajectory to the northwest it does not appear that the closure of commercial ports in the Hawaiian Islands will be necessary. However, ports on the Big Island, Maui and Moloka’i are under a readiness condition that could prompt immediate evacuation with one order.
While Ignacio remains a very powerful category Three hurricane, the predicted shearing and weakening is, according to Maui Weather Guru Glenn James, beginning to happen. He reports:
“Based on the most recent advisory, Hurricane Ignacio is now at category 3 strength…with 115 mph sustained winds. Going forward from here, it looks like we’ll find a definite weakening hurricane throughout the remainder of its life. Nonetheless, we’ll be dealing with a relatively close call by what will have been down graded to tropical storm Ignacio. The exact distance offshore of this tropical storm, will have a bearing on how strong or light our local winds become in different parts of the state. We’re hoping to see this storms center remain well offshore, which would help to limit our exposure to winds directly associated with Ignacio.
Of Interest: The Central Pacific has never had two Category 4 tropical cyclones simultaneously…such as we’ve seen recently!”
As a precaution, the Coast Guard COTP has moved the ports of Hilo and Kawaihae on the Big Island and the ports of Kaunakakai and Kahului in Maui County to Condition X-Ray (III): The READINESS condition in which winds above 34 knots (39 mph) are expected within 48 hours.
The Port Conditions of Kalaeloa and Honolulu on Oahu are Whiskey (IV): The ALERT condition in which winds above 34 knots (39 mph) are expected within 72 hours.
There is no upgraded Port Condition set for Kauai at this time. As a reminder, Port Conditions are subject to change based on the projected path and intensity of Ignacio.
The Port Conditions are:
Condition Hurricane Season Preparedness (V): Seasonal readiness, 1 June – 30 Nov.
The Coast Guard will continue to Broadcast Notice to Mariners and send out a Marine Safety Information Bulletin to notify the maritime community of port condition changes. Additionally, all maritime users are requested to monitor the progress of this hurricane and make preparations accordingly.
Due to Hurricane Ignacio, a Tropical Storm Watch has been issued for Hawaii County. Hurricane Ignacio is currently located about 625 miles east-southeast of Hilo and moving west-northwest at 8 miles per hour as a category 3 hurricane. Ignacio is expected to weaken beginning Sunday and the state could begin to feel the impacts as early as Sunday evening. The 11 a.m. update shows a track even farther north than earlier models. Today Mayor Alan Arakawa signed an emergency proclamation, effective 11:00 a.m. today, in anticipation of the arrival of Tropical Cyclone Ignacio. The National Weather Service (NWS) has advised that although Ignacio’s track is still uncertain, the system has the potential to cause widespread damage throughout Maui County.
The proclamation recognizes the need for government agencies and representatives from the private sector to mobilize and provide immediate services to our island residents and to mitigate hazardous situations in advance of the weather effects from Tropical Cyclone Ignacio such as sustained tropical storm force winds and the potential for hurricane force winds, heavy rains, potential lightning, flooding, and extremely high surf and storm surge.
“I urge all citizens to prepare their homes, family members and pets for the potential impacts of Ignacio,” said Mayor Arakawa. “Now is the time to stock up on seven days of water and non-perishable food supplies, and to secure or move inside any loose objects around your home that could become airborne missiles. Make sure you have on-hand fresh batteries for your radios and flashlights, and keep your vehicles fully fueled.”
Mayor Arakawa also encouraged residents to visit the County website for updates and to sign up for Maka‘ala, the County’s new emergency alert system, at www.mauicounty.gov. “It’s important that we stay safe, and stay connected,” he said.
For general preparedness information, visit the Civil Defense webpage at www.mauicounty.gov/civildefense.
Governor David Ige signed a similar document Friday – encouraging all residents and visitors to be vigilant and prepared. Hawaii Tourism Authority is also mobilizing to prepare for the worst – and hope for the best.
For official updates, we recommend regularly checking the following websites, as well as tuning in to local broadcasts for information and instructions on Ignacio:
For visitor related information and a list of closures due to the weather, please visit the ‘Special Alert’ section of the HTA website www.hawaiitourismauthority.org/news/special-alert.
For travel safety tips, please visit the HTA’s Travel Smart Hawaii website at www.travelsmarthawaii.com and download the Travel Safety Brochure, which is available in English, Japanese, Korean and Chinese. We recommend familiarizing visitors with this information.
We also encourage all of our industry partners to ensure that your crisis plans are current for the safety of our visitors as well as your employees. It is important that we begin to prepare for its potential impacts.
The HTA will continue to provide any storm-related updates that may impact visitors. If you or any of your staff wish to receive our updates, please sign up at www.hawaiitourismauthority.org.
By Jeff King
As the nation takes a look back 10 years to when Hurricane Katrina pounded New Orleans, a whole bunch of eyes are looking at the eastern Pacific where two major hurricanes are churning toward Hawai’i.
Hurricane Ignacio is now in the Central Pacific region of responsibility. As of 8 a.m. today, the center of Ignacio is about 720 miles east southeast of Kahului. This is a major Category Three hurricane with sustained winds of 115 mph. The storm is rumbling west northwest at about nine mph. On his current path, we would begin feeling the heavy rains and 74+ mph winds late Monday. As Maui Weather expert Glenn James points out, forecasts are guides – not promises. A slight wobble either way could mean the difference between a major storm event for Hawaii or just slightly elevated humidity. His forecast fingers are crossed in the hopes that Ignacio continues on a path that keeps the center of the storm offshore.
Then there’s Jimena. She’s already a Category Four tempest and is expected to reach full Category Five strength by tonight. That means winds sustained at 125+mph. On her current path, she would weaken some before coming into the Central Pacific. Worst case scenario would be two hurricanes two days apart. This is not to scare you – just inform you. Bookmark Glenn James Hawaii Weather Today page as it updates key satellite and radar images and loops constantly.
Check your emergency kit. Don’t forget about your pets. Let’s be careful out there.
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