Hurricane brings rare watches, warnings to Hawaii

Audrey Hill
August 23, 2018

Tropical storm-force winds and torrential rain could start arriving on Wednesday.

NASA satellite imagery shows the hurricane is now in the Central Pacific Ocean southeast of the islands.

The weather service says that in a Category 5 hurricane, a high percentage of framed homes will be destroyed.

"Winds tend to steer storms away from there", said Princeton University climate scientist Gabe Vecchi.

"The centre of Lane will track dangerously close to, or over the islands Thursday through Saturday", a warning statement read. The forecast track for Lane continues on a northwest path today before turning more north-northwest on Thursday.

Rainfall of 20 inches (51 cm) in some areas could lead to major flash flooding, landslides and mudslides, the NHC said.

Hawaii has been plagued by freak natural events this year after a 30,000 foot high ash cloud from the Kilauea volcano blanketed the island in lava and dust.

Unfortunately NOAA's "hurricane hunter" aircraft that flies through the center of the storm had to be grounded Tuesday morning, as it needed to be examined after "encountering strong turbulence last night" when flying through Lane, according to NOAA. A Hurricane Watch is in effect for Oahu, Kauai County, including the islands of Kauai and Niihau.

Ige granted administrative leave for non-essential state employees in Hawaii and Maui counties, as the state prepares for severe weather conditions resulting from Hurricane Lane.

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The storm, with sustained winds of 160 miles per hour as of 11 p.m. HDT (5 a.m. EDT), is predicted to either graze or directly strike the islands in the coming days. Honolulu, the state's largest city and capital, is on the island of O'ahu.

Residents "rushed to stores to stock up on bottled water, ramen, toilet paper and other supplies" as the storm neared, The Associated Press reports.

Even if the center of Lane doesn't make landfall, the islands could be walloped with rain and wind.

Computer models mostly do not predict the storm to make a direct hit on the islands, which would be the worst-case scenario.

The storm was located about 350 miles south-southeast of Kailua-Kona, Hawaii, and 505 miles south-southeast of Honolulu, as of the CPHC's latest update.

A hurricane watch means that hurricane conditions are possible within the watch area. "I've not seen such dramatic changes in the forecast track as I've seen with this storm".

Governor David Ige signs an emergency proclamation ahead of Hurricane Lane.

Hurricane Lane is hurtling toward Hawaii.

"I remember how very little rain fell".

Other reports by MaliBehiribAe

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