Hurricane Hits Hawaii’s Coast


Rachel Nelson, Sports Editor

Even though Hurricane Lane passed Hawaii this weekend, the string of islands are still feeling the effects from the category three hurricane as natives begin recovery from the many days of heavy rainfall. And there may be more on the way.

Hawaii had over 52 inches of rain from Lane during the span of four days, August 22-26. Big Island, the easternmost island, was hit the hardest by the rain. Some of the residents there had to be evacuated while other water rescues occurred in Hilo and Keaau. Many roads were closed down due to flooding and landslides.

While they are still evaluating the destruction, officials of Big Island fear the cost to repair could be in the millions. 170 residents and businesses have reported damage so far.

Even though the damage is severe, it isn’t as bad as it could have been had Hawaii been hit directly from Lane as it lessened into a tropical storm and moved west. But just days after Lane passed, there is already another storm beginning in the Pacific Ocean.

A flash flood warning was issued Tuesday, August 27 for the island Kauai. Residents on the north coast were told to evacuate and others have been left stranded by the high waters. A flash flood watch is in effect for Oahu, which is home to 70% of Hawaii’s residents.

Mount Kilauea, one of the most active volcanoes in the world, began spewing lava on May 3 and has already destroyed over 700 homes. With the rain from Lane, steam has been created from Kilauea from falling on the still hot rocks and created white-out conditions for the area.

Hawaiian farmers are only just beginning to assess the damage left by Lane, following more than 50% of the state’s papaya production to be ruined by Kilauea awakening. Flooding, excess moisture and pounding rains could hurt the macadamia nut and flower harvests on the east side of the island, where the brunt of the storm took place. The nonstop rain could have washed away macadamia nuts that are falling from the trees for harvest, this could affect the state’s iconic industry.

As residents recover from Lane, they are keeping an eye on Tropical Storm Miriam. Although it is still 2000 miles east of Hawaii, it is expected to become a category two hurricane by the time it reaches the islands.

While Miriam is expected to blow past the islands without much of a problem, Tropical Storm Norman is following just behind- also expected to turn into a hurricane by the time it reaches the islands.

While the islands are still cleaning up the damage from Hurricane Lane, they now have to worry about the storms coming right behind it and all the more damage that could come from Miriam and Norman.