(BIVN) – A Tropical Storm Warning is in effect for Hawaii County, and East Hawaii is under a continued Flash Flood Warning, as Hurricane Lane is 170 miles southwest of Kailua-Kona and heading north at 6 mph.
UPDATE: Police and Fire personnel are recommending residents of Reeds Island on Kaiulani Street in Hilo evacuate their homes due to increased danger of severe flooding, a county alert stated at 8:44 p.m. “Public safety personnel are going house to house, contacting the residents and informing them of the increasing threat. Those refusing to evacuate may not be able to be rescued by first responders should conditions continue to worsen. Kaiulani Street is closed to incoming traffic.”
According to the National Weather Service:
At 800 PM HST…radar and rain gauges indicated bands of heavy rain continuing to move into the windward and southeast sections of the Big Island, with rainfall rates of 1 to 3 inches per hour. The heaviest rainfall has been focused upslope from Hilo and along the Hamakua coast just north of Hilo during the past couple of hours, and water levels on the Wailuku River and Honolii Stream are rising rapidly. Flash flooding is ongoing across the warned area, with recent reports of road closures and water rescues. Saddle Road has recently been closed near the 10.5 mile marker above Hilo due to a landslide. Bands of heavy rain will continue moving into the Big Island during the night. THIS IS A VERY DANGEROUS SITUATION. AVOID UNNECESSARY TRAVEL.
On the forecast track, the center of Lane – which is still a category 3 hurricane with maximum sustained winds near 120 mph – will move over, or dangerously close to, portions of the main Hawaiian islands later tonight and Friday. Tropical storm conditions are already occurring on the Big Island, forecasters say.
Hurricane Lane is expected to produce total rain accumulations of 10 to 20 inches, with localized amounts of 30 to 40 inches possible over portions of the Hawaiian Islands. Over two feet of rain has already fallen at a couple of locations on the windward side of the Big Island, forecasters report.
Mail delivery has been cancelled and all post offices will be closed on Friday, officials say.
All non-emergency County operations are suspended, including transfer stations. All County Parks are closed through Friday and will be re-assessed for weekend use. All pavilion and camping permits for these parks have been cancelled.
All State facilities and services are closed, including all schools. All DLNR outdoor recreation areas and reserves are closed.
Numerous major and secondary roads are closed, civil defense says. The list includes:
- Akolea Wooden Bridge
- Bayfront Highway
- East Kawailani Street from Awapuhi to Nohona Street
- Highway 19 (intermittent closures between mm 13-16)
- Kaalaiki Road in Kau, just above Naalehu
- Kukila Street
- Kamehameha Avenue between Pauahi and Ponahawai
- Laupahoehoe Point Road
- Old Mamalahoa in Honomu (past the gym)
- Pohaku from 39th to 40th in Orchidland Estates
- Pauahi Street Bridge
- Piihonua Wooden Bridge
- Rainbow Drive
- Saddle Road at the 10.5 mile marker
- South Point Road from Kamaoa Junction to South Point
- Wainuenue Ave above Akolea Road
- Waipio Valley Road
“Due to the potential effects of Hurricane Lane, five emergency shelters have been opened on the north and west side of Hawaii Island,” and one in Hilo, civil defense says. “These shelters are for your convenience, but there is NO mandatory evacuation at this time. The shelters are available if you need to relocate.”
- Waiakea High School: 155 W. Kawili St, Hilo
- Hookena Elementary School: 86-4355 Mamalahoa Highway, Captain Cook
- Kamehameha Park Hisaoka Gym: 54-382 Kamehameha Park Road, Kapaau *Pet Friendly
- Kealakehe High School: 74-5000 Puohulihuli Street, Kailua-Kona *Pet Friendly
- Waikoloa Elementary & Middle School: 68-1730 Ho’oko Street, Waikoloa
- Konawaena High School Gym: 81-1043 Konawaena School Road, Kealakekua
“If you choose to relocate to a shelter, food is not provided (don’t forget pet food!). Please bring your blankets and pillows if possible. However, the shelter is open to everyone with or without these items,” civil defense says.