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No reports of damage from Hawaii County

By Kevin Dayton

LAST UPDATED: 12:49 a.m. HST, Oct 28, 2012

Hawaii County officials in Hilo said there were no reports of damage or injuries on the island late Saturday.

Mayor Billy Kenoi said shortly after midnight that Waialoa Small Boat Harbor in Hilo was experiencing four-foot surges at intervals of every six minutes. Some boats had partially pulled off their moorings, but he said there were no reports of any vessels breaking completely free.

He said a total of about 830 people were staying at emergency shelters set up by the county at Hawaii island schools and parks.

Kenoi said county officials were mobilized and ready, and the evacuation of coastal areas was complete by 10:05 p.m.

"Police, fire, civil defense, parks and rec, and public works are all in place, and at this point in time we're prepared for the worst but we're hoping for the best," Kenoi said.

The county opened more than a dozen shelters across the Big Island. The busiest shelter was the West Hawaii Civic Center in Kona, which housed about 350 people. Another 70 people took shelter at Andrews Gym in Hilo, with other shelters across the island reporting that they were accommodating 20 to 50 people.

Tsunami sirens in East Hawaii including the Keauakaha, Waiakea and at least portions of Puna initially failed to work in a "glitch," but officials were able to fix the problem. The sirens were sounded successfully in the East Hawaii area at about 9:10 p.m.

"We received feed back that throughout East Hawaii from Laupahoehoe and through Keaukaha down to Paradise Park, they're all working," Kenoi said. He said the sirens are tested every month.

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