• Tuesday, September 18, 2018
  • 81°

Top News

Tropical storm watch issued as Hurricane Olivia heads toward Hawaii

  • COURTESY NOAA

    The current forecast track for Hurricane Olivia 11 p.m. Sunday.

  • DAN NAKASO / DNAKASO@STARADVERTISER.COM

    Honolulu Mayor Kirk Caldwell listens to a reporter’s question during a press conference today.

ADVERTISING

UPDATE: 11 p.m.

A Tropical Storm Watch is in effect for…

* Oahu

* Maui County…including the islands of Maui, Molokai, Lanai, and Kahoolawe

* Hawaii County

At 11:00 PM HST (0900 UTC), the center of Hurricane Olivia was located near latitude 21.7 North, longitude 146.9 West. Olivia is moving toward the west near 9 mph (15 km/h). This general motion is expected to continue through early Monday, followed by a turn toward the west-southwest starting late Monday. This west-southwest motion is expected to continue through Tuesday evening. On this forecast track, tropical storm conditions are possible over some parts of Hawaii starting Tuesday.

Maximum sustained winds measured by Hurricane Hunter aircraft are near 85 mph (140 km/h) with higher gusts. Little change in strength is forecast through late Monday, with gradual weakening possible starting some time on Tuesday.

Hurricane-force winds extend outward up to 30 miles (45 km) from the center and tropical-storm-force winds extend outward up to 120 miles (195 km).

The estimated minimum central pressure is 980 mb (28.94 inches).

8 p.m.

A tropical storm watch remains in effect for most of the state as Hurricane Olivia continues toward the islands.

“On the forecast track, the outer circulation of Olivia will likely approach the main Hawaiian Islands on Tuesday, with tropical storm conditions possible over some areas starting Tuesday night,” the Central Pacific Hurricane Center reported.

Olivia, a Category 1 hurricane with winds at 75 mph, is 570 miles east-northeast of Hilo and 730 miles east of Honolulu. Olivia is moving toward the west near 11 mph. This general motion is expected to continue through early Monday, with some slowing in forward speed. A west-southwest motion is expected to start late Monday.

The tropical storm watch includes Oahu, Maui County and Hawaii County. Tropical storm conditions are possible within the watch area starting Tuesday.

Residents of Kauai and Niihau should continue to monitor Olivia’s progress.

5 p.m.

A tropical storm watch has been issued this evening for Oahu, Maui County and Hawaii County.

A tropical storm watch means tropical storm conditions are possible in the watch area. A watch is typically issued 48 hours before the anticipated first occurrence of tropical-storm-force winds. Hurricane Olivia is expected to approach the main Hawaiian Islands later Tuesday and Tuesday night.

“It is too early to specify where the most significant impacts will occur,” said the National Weather Service. “However, it is important to remember that the mountainous terrain of Hawaii can produce localized areas of strongly enhanced winds and rainfall, even well away from the tropical cyclone center.”

The watch includes the areas of: Big Island Interior, Big Island North and East, Big Island Summits, Central Oahu, Haleakala Summit, Kahoolawe, Kohala, Kona, Lanai Makai, Lanai Mauka, Leeward Haleakala, Maui Central Valley, Maui Leeward West, Maui Windward West, Molokai Leeward, Molokai Windward, Oahu Koolau, Oahu North Shore, Oahu South Shore, Olomana, South Big Island, Waianae Coast, Waianae Mountains, and Windward Haleakala.

Olivia is about 595 miles east-northeast of Hilo and 760 miles east of Honolulu. Olivia has winds at 75 mph and is moving toward the west near 12 mph.

Olivia’s motion is expected to continue for the next 12 to 24 hours with some slowing in forward speed. A west-southwest motion is expected to begin later Monday.

Hurricane-force winds extend outward up to 25 miles from the center and tropical-storm-force winds extend outward up to 125 miles.

The National Weather Service said damaging winds may begin in some parts of the islands as early as Tuesday afternoon and evening. Gusts over hurricane force are possible as Olivia moves across the island chain.

The Central Pacific Hurricane Center said total rainfall amounts of 10 to 15 inches, with isolated amounts over 20 inches, are possible with Olivia. Large swells generated by Olivia are expected to continue to increase near the main Hawaiian Islands. Surf will continue to build as Olivia approaches and may become damaging on some east-facing shores Tuesday or Wednesday.

1:40 p.m.

Gov. David Ige has signed an emergency proclamation that allows state money to be appropriated for losses related to Hurricane Olivia and declares the counties of Hawaii, Maui, Kalawao, Kauai and the City and County of Honolulu disaster areas in order to implement emergency management functions.

Even if Olivia arrives as a tropical storm, as predicted, Ige’s office said today that the islands still could be hit with “high winds, heavy rains, high surf, storm surges and flooding that threaten to harm communities and cause extensive damage to public and private property across the state.”

In a statement, Ige said that “A tropical storm could bring heavy rain and flooding, especially in places that are saturated from previous storms. Now is the time to prepare.”

Ige’s emergency proclamation expires on Sept. 17.

1 p.m.

A “Hurricane Hunter” crew flying through Hurricane Olivia reported at 11 a.m. this morning that the eye of the hurricane was breaking apart, Mayor Kirk Caldwell said.

The crew made four passes through Olivia and reported that “the eye is not as formed,” Caldwell said. “It’s broken on one side, kind of the southwestern side, which means it’s getting a little destabilized. That’s good information and the winds have dropped, which is good.”

Even if Olivia does not arrive with hurricane force winds, Caldwell said, “I don’t think we should let our guard down. You saw what happened when (Hurricane) Lane became a tropical storm: The Big Island got pounded. Kauai got pounded.”

Even as a tropical storm, Lane cost the city about $1 million in overtime, Caldwell said.

“As mayor I’m not letting my guard down,” Caldwell said. “We want to let our guards down because of hurricane fatigue, but we should not.”

Caldwell repeated his call to residents and visitors to be prepared, but not hoard supplies.

“Leave enough for other people,” he said. “Think about your friends, family and neighbors. Take enough just for yourself (or) just use our water supply. We have some of the best water in the world.”

For people who already over-stocked on supplies, Caldwell reminded them that hurricane season runs through Nov. 30.

“Don’t return things,” he said. “We have a very active hurricane season that goes through Nov. 30. Don’t overreact, but also think about everyone else.”

11:30 a.m.

Hurricane Olivia continues on its path toward the Hawaiian Islands as a Category 1 hurricane with maximum sustained winds around 75 mph.

At 11 a.m. today, the storm was 660 miles east-northeast of Hilo and 825 miles east of Honolulu. It was moving west toward the islands at approximately 14 mph. Hurricane-force winds extend outward up to 30 miles from the center and tropical-storm-force winds extend outward up to 125 miles.

Little change is expected over the next 36 hours, although Olivia is forecast to begin gradually weakening Monday night.

According to the National Weather Service, the storm will take a turn toward the west-southwest overnight on Monday, with the state beginning to feel the impact of the storm from Tuesday afternoon through the evening.

Although no watches or warnings are in effect yet, large surf is expected to reach the state starting on Monday and may cause damage to exposed east-facing shores on Tuesday or Wednesday.

9:40 a.m.

Mayor Kirk Caldwell this morning urged residents and visitors to remain vigilant about the threat of Hurricane Olivia and asked people not to hoard supplies.

“I want to stress the importance of preparing adequately, but again, I’m asking that people not purchase more than they need, and if you have purchased more than needed, please don’t return items; rather keep supplies on hand for the remainder for hurricane season,” Caldwell said in a statement following a statewide video conference on the threat from Olivia.

“While the storm has weakened and is projected to turn slightly more to the south of Oahu, we have seen the importance of preparing for the threat of a hurricane or tropical storm well ahead of time,” Caldwell said in his statement. “For everyone who went through the days leading up to Hurricane Lane, take the lessons we learned and use them now.

“With our planet experiencing the effects of climate change, we are going to have to treat these kinds of repeated events as a new reality, and not only prepare accordingly, but also tackle the emissions creating this problem.”

PREVIOUS COVERAGE

Olivia is barely hanging on to hurricane status as it approaches Hawaii.

As of 5 a.m. today, the storm was about 735 miles east-northeast of Hilo and 900 miles east of Honolulu with sustained winds near 75 mph and was moving westward at approximately 16 mph. Hurricane-force winds extend outward up to 30 miles from the center and tropical-storm-force winds extend outward up to 120 miles.

According to forecasters with the Central Pacific Hurricane Center in Honolulu, Olivia is expected to make a slow turn toward the west-southwest starting late Monday. A strong deep layer ridge, currently located to the north and west of the storm, will push the storm south toward the state.

“Impacts associated with Olivia for each island will be highly dependent on the final track it takes near or over the islands,” forecasters said on Saturday.

The latest forecast track shows Olivia starting to impact the state on Tuesday night as a tropical storm.

Comments (6)
By participating in online discussions you acknowledge that you have agreed to the TERMS OF SERVICE. An insightful discussion of ideas and viewpoints is encouraged, but comments must be civil and in good taste, with no personal attacks. If your comments are inappropriate, you may be banned from posting. Report comments if you believe they do not follow our guidelines.

Having trouble with comments? Learn more here.

Scroll Up