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Fire weather watch, wind advisory in effect for some of Hawaii

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UPDATE: 5:20 p.m.

The high surf advisory has been canceled and a wind advisory is now in effect for portions of Hawaii island, Maui, Lanai and Kahoolawe.

The advisory, which is in effect until 6 p.m. Friday, reports strong trade winds developing tonight, peaking Thursday and Friday. The National Weather Service in Honolulu reports the strongest winds are forecast to occur over and downwind of terrain and saddle areas.

Expect east winds of 20 to 30 mph with localized gusts of 50 mph.

“Watch out for falling tree branches when walking or driving. Make sure tents and awnings are secure or take them down. Be prepared for power outages,” according to the advisory.

In addition, a fire weather watch is in effect for the leeward areas of all Hawaiian Islands as a result of gusty winds and low humidity. That means critical fire weather conditions are forecast to occur.

The watch is in effect from Thursday afternoon until Friday afternoon.

“Very dry fuels combined with developing windy trades and low relative humidities may produce critical fire weather conditions Thursday and Friday. Winds will decrease over the weekend,” according to a statement.

Humidity is expected to be near 45 percent during the afternoon hours.

Outdoor burning is not recommended, because any fires that develop are likely to spread quickly.

3:40 p.m.

The National Weather Service canceled today’s high surf advisory at 3:19 p.m.

A small craft advisory remains in effect for the islands of Niihau, Kauai, Oahu and Molokai until 6 a.m. Saturday.

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A high surf advisory for the north and west facing shores of Niihau, Kauai, Oahu, and Molokai, has been extended until 6 p.m. this evening.

The National Weather Service expects surf of 14 to 18 feet on the north shores, and 8 to 12 feet on the west shores of affected islands as a northwest swell that peaked early this morning slowly declines.

Impacts include strong, breaking waves and strong currents, which will make swimming dangerous.

Forecasters say a very small, medium-period bump from the northwest arriving Thursday will keep the swell from falling completely.

Surf for north facing shores is expected to decline from 8 to 12 feet this afternoon to 4 to 5 feet on Thursday morning. Surf for west facing shores is expected to decline from 4 to 6 feet this afternoon to 2 to 4 feet on Thursday.

Surf on east facing shores is expected to increase, from 4 to 5 feet this afternoon to a choppy 6 to 8 feet Thursday afternoon due to strengthening trades.

A gale watch goes into effect for southeast Hawaii island waters from 6 a.m. Thursday until late Friday night.

A small craft advisory is also in place for leeward Oahu and Maui County waters through 6 a.m. Saturday.

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