Hurricane Douglas heading for Hawaii


The National Weather Service said parts of Maui will feel the first impacts of Hurricane Douglas on Sunday morning, followed by Oahu about midday and the islands of Kauai and Niihau in the evening.

In a season that has seen early storm formation in the Atlantic, the eastern Pacific has been slower for storm development than in previous years.

Forecasters were warning powerful winds, rain and storm surge could inflict damage. A direct hit on Oahu still remained a possibility, he said.

"We made the decision that the ballot drop boxes would be useful to Honolulu voters who had concerns over mailing them", Quidilla said.

On Sunday, the hurricane was expected to bring along sustained winds of 140 kph (85 mph). Before that, just two other hurricanes have directly hit the islands since the late 1800s.

Hawaii is gearing up to face a hurricane that threatens to pummel the islands with unsafe surf, strong winds and flash floods, even as residents grapple with escalating numbers of coronavirus cases. "It could be a life threatening event", he said.

"We know that things are going to get wet, things are going to blow and things are going to slide", Meyers said.

Hanna still posed a threat, the hurricane centre said, noting it could dump upward of 45 centimetres of rain in the area through Monday.

Lau said Douglas would have been a lot worse had its track been 20 or 30 miles (32 to 48 kilometers) to the south.

Officials on Oahu and Maui sounded emergency sirens as rain fell and blustery winds swayed trees.

In Honolulu, Mayor Kirk Caldwell has opened evacuation centers that can accommodate 924 people, but warned they should only be used as a "last resort". On Maui, 22 people were at five shelters around the island.

Those seeking refuge at one of the sites will need to wear face masks at all times except when they are eating, drinking or sleeping.

Also, each shelter has less capacity because of the physical distancing requirements to prevent the spread COVID-19. Every among those shown they would shelter-in-place and not look for haven at a hurricane shelter.

Hawaii has some of the lowest coronavirus infection rates in the nation, but numbers have been rising. On Friday, the state reported 60 new confirmed cases, a record high.

President Donald J. Trump declared that an emergency exists in the State of Hawaii and ordered Federal assistance to supplement State and local response efforts due to the emergency conditions resulting from Hurricane Douglas beginning on July 23, 2020, and continuing.

Hawaiian Airlines cancelled all Sunday flights between Hawaii and the USA mainland and also between the other islands. A maximum of 15 inches of rain or higher is also possible.

A hurricane warning is in effect for Maui County, Kauai County and Oahu, and a tropical storm warning is in effect for Hawaii County.

Ige stated locals ought to now have their 14- day emergency situation supply package in location, however since of COVID-19, he motivated individuals to include masks, hand sanitizer and sterilizing wipes.

Honolulu resident Scott Silva had supplies in hand. The storm surge will lift water levels as much as three feet (one meter) near the hurricane's center, it added.