UPDATE – As of Tuesday morning, the Flash Flood Warning is no longer in effect. A Flood Advisory is posted for the Kaʻū area, however. The National Weather Service says “streams remain elevated, and emergency management reports that Kaalaiki Road and Wood Valley Road remain closed.”
(BIVN) – A Flash Flood Warning has been issued for an area of Kaʻū, as heavy rain continues to soak the east side of Hawaiʻi island.
Law enforcement has reported that flooding has closed Highway 11 in the Kawa Flats area between mile markers 58 and 62, officials say.
At 10:47 a.m. HST, radar and automated rain gauges indicated heavy rain falling at a rate of 1 to 2 inches per hour over the Kaʻū and Puna Districts.
A Flood Advisory is in effect for most of East Hawaiʻi, and rainfall is also occurring on the higher elevations on Saddle Road. Additional heavy rainfall is expected through the day, the National Weather Service.
The entire island of Hawaiʻi is under a Flash Flood Watch, and a Winter Storm Warning is in effect for the summits of Maunakea and Mauna Loa.
From the National Weather Service discussion at 10 a.m. HST:
An area of deep moisture is focused on the Big Island this morning and is skirting south of the other islands. A strong 1039 mb surface high is centered about 1400 miles of the state, and a weak but broad mid- to upper-level trough is sitting a couple hundred miles to the southwest. This has caused the local winds to shift out of the east to southeast, while a broad area of convergence under the trough aloft is producing heavy showers and thunderstorms near and just south of the state. The northern edge of this unstable, convergent, easterly flow is streaming across the Big Island and is focusing showers over the Hilo, Puna, and Kau Districts, where numerous gages have measured 3 to 6 inches of rainfall during the past 12 hours. A few briefly heavy showers are impacting windward areas from Maui to Kauai this morning, and high clouds are blanketing much of the state. Expect little change through the day, and the highest chances for continued heavy rainfall will be on the Big Island, where a Flash Flood Watch remains in place and a Winter Storm Warning is up for the high summits.