Hurricane Ana was on course Saturday to miss Hawaii by more than a hundred miles but was generating high waves, strong winds and heavy rains that prompted flash-flood warnings throughout the islands.
Hurricane Ana was on course Saturday to miss Hawaii by more than a hundred miles but was generating high waves, strong winds and heavy rains that prompted flash-flood warnings throughout the islands
On Oahu, lifeguards rescued dozens of swimmers stayed from Sandy Beach to Waikiki. Many of the swimmers had disregarded warnings to stay out of the water and instead waded into the dangerous riptides and fierce waves spawned by Ana, emergency officials said.
There were no injuries in any of those rescues as of Saturday night, according to Hono¬lulu Emergency Services Department spokeswoman Shayne Enright.
Only a handful of roads were hindered by debris or flooding, city officials reported. They opened five evacuation shelters for the homeless and for anyone who didn’t feel safe knowing that a hurricane was spiraling south of the island chain.
Ana had every island in Hawaii on alert as it brushed past as a Category 1 hurricane with maximum sustained winds of 80 mph. The storm dumped more than 11 inches of rain on Mauna Loa on Hawaii island.
Flooding from Ana overran one of Hawaii County’s main highways through Kaawa Flats on Saturday , Highway 11 between mile markers 57 and 59.
Darryl Oliveira, director of Hawaii County Civil Defense, said the closure did not have a substantial impact on a community already anticipating a storm.
Forecasters issued a tropical storm warning for the Garden Island and Niihau and expected tropical storm conditions with heavy rains and winds of 39 mph or higher to persist there for the next day or so.
On Oahu, amid surf with 8- to 12-foot faces, Honolulu lifeguards made 24 rescues at Waikiki, 10 at Sandy Beach and three at Makapuu and issued more than 600 warnings, according to the city’s Emergency Services Department.
With the storm passing more than 100 miles south of the main islands on Saturday, officials said the
damage could have been a lot worse, but the preparations were worth the effort.