HONOLULU – State leaders enacted the 2015 Hawaii Catastrophic Hurricane Plan during a small signing ceremony on Oahu today. Its good timing. Officials pointed out that Hawaii faces another potential tropical cyclone in the form of Hilda, a Category 1 hurricane currently 1200 miles east-southeast of Hilo.
Today also marks the one year anniversary of Iselle, which battered East Hawaii (Puna, especially) as a Hurricane before making landfall as a tropical storm on August 7, 2014. The state was working on the 2015 Hawaii Catastrophic Hurricane Plan well before Iselle. Officials say it was a two year effort.
“The Catastrophic Hurricane Plan provides strategies for joint state and federal actions before, during, and after a catastrophic event,” explained Doug Mayne, Administrator of Emergency Management, in a media release. “The two-year planning process we underwent places us in a great position to collaborate with our federal partners, state and county agencies, non-profits, the private sector and local communities to ensure we minimize suffering from the impact of a catastrophic hurricane.”
In the same media release, the state had a brief update on Hilda:
“Hawaii Emergency Management Agency (HI-EMA) initiated coordination efforts with the National Weather Service (NWS) and emergency management partners for Hurricane Hilda. NWS briefed today that Hilda is a Category 1 hurricane 1200 miles east-southeast of Hilo. There is currently a 5% chance that Hawaii Island may see tropical storm force winds sometime Wednesday morning.
HI-EMA recommends residents and visitors continue to monitor local news broadcasts for the latest on Hurricane Hilda.”