High surf warning in effect for Maui, Molokai and Big Isle
  • Tuesday, March 19, 2019
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High surf warning in effect for Maui, Molokai and Big Isle

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A high surf warning has been issued for the east-facing shores of Molokai, Maui and the Big Island, and a high surf advisory for the north-facing shores of those isles, along with north- and east-facing shores of Kauai and Oahu, effective through 6 a.m. Thursday.

Weather officials said surf is expected to build this morning, reaching 12 to 16 feet along the east-facing shores of Molokai, Maui and the Big Island, and 15 to 20 feet along north-facing shores of Molokai, Maui and the Big Island this afternoon, then decline on Thursday. Surf is expected to reach 14 to 18 feet on the north-facing shores of Oahu.

Bayfront Highway on Hawaii island is closed in both directions, according to Hawaii County Civil Defense at 10:30 a.m. today, and Laupahoehoe Boat Ramp is closed.

Expect ocean water to occasionally sweep across portions of beaches, and strong, breaking waves and rip currents, making swimming difficult and dangerous. Breaking waves may also impact harbors, making navigation of the harbor channel dangerous.

A long-period, north-northeast swell produced by a storm in the Northeast Pacific brings the potential for surges in north-facing harbors, including Hilo and Kahului Harbors, which peaks this afternoon and evening.

Mariners using these harbors should exercise caution entering or leaving port, and when mooring and launching vessels.

Anyone entering the water could face significant injury or death, weather officials warned, and boaters should be aware of surfers and body boarders utilizing the harbor channel to access surfing areas.

Forecasters, meanwhile, say there will be mostly dry conditions along with light winds across the state through the second half of the week and upcoming weekend.

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