Flossie is floundering, possibly getting up to minimal hurricane status from a tropical storm sometime overnight into today, then weakening as it moves westward.
Meanwhile Tropical Storm Erick, a once powerful hurricane, is heading west-northwest today, bringing heavy rain to the southeast and windward slopes of Hawaii island, the Central Pacific Hurricane Center forecast shows.
Wet and windy weather is forecast for the windward side of all the Hawaiian Islands as deep tropical moisture moves up the island chain, said Alex Gibbs, lead forecaster with the Hurricane Center.
Total rainfall amounts of 4 to 8 inches are possible.
A wind advisory is in effect through today for Maui and the Big Island, and Saturday will be gusty for the entire state as Erick passes south of the islands, he said.
Erick was expected to pass about 200 miles south of Hawaii island Thursday night and weaken into a tropical depression by Sunday. Erick was also expected to bring dangerous surf conditions Thursday night and Friday to east and southeast shores.
Flossie is expected to cross into the Central Pacific basin today.
The potential or probability it will bring storm-force winds — 39 mph or more — to Hawaii island through Tuesday was at 5% to 10%, based on the latest information Thursday evening.
“Wind shear is going to pick up quite a bit and lead to a weakening trend on a west track,” Gibbs said. It is expected to get within a few hundred miles of Hawaii island.
Flossie will likely turn northwest late Monday to Tuesday and head north away from the islands.
However, “a slight change could put it on top of the Big Island. We don’t want to let our guard down at this point,” Gibbs said.
“The most important thing for folks to keep in mind is it’s never too early to get prepared for impacts from tropical systems,” he said.
With the storms losing some steam, the planned deployment to Hawaii of three Air Force Reserve “hurricane hunter” WC-130J aircraft was canceled, officials said.
The three aircraft and a C-130J Super Hercules with extra cargo for the mission took off Monday from Mississippi to provide weather support for Erick and Flossie, the Air Force had reported.
Three weather crews assigned to the 53rd Weather Reconnaissance Squadron were expected to start flying missions Wednesday, but the National Hurricane Center canceled the mission.
Hawaii County offered residents free sand at county base yards around the island to fill their own sandbags ahead of possible flooding.
Cedar Church Kalihi, which is already housing 25 homeless at the church and 40 on its 4-acre Waianae Valley farm, offered to take an additional 50 homeless people at the farm if they needed shelter from the storms.
Star-Advertiser reporter William Cole contributed to this report.