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Hurricane Lane pummels Hawaii with rain

Hurricane Lane, now a Category 4 storm, is bringing heavy rain to parts of Hawaii's Big Island. CNN Meteorologist Jennifer Gray has the latest update.

Posted: Aug 24, 2018 11:49 AM
Updated: Aug 24, 2018 12:00 PM

Hurricane Lane weakened as it chugged toward Hawaii on Thursday, but officials warned residents that the storm was still a significant rainmaker.

More than 19 inches of rain fell on a northeastern section of Hawaii's Big Island during a 24-hour period, the National Weather Service said.

The outer bands of the Category 3 cyclone pummeled Big Island on Thursday, triggering landslides and causing flooding that forced officials to close some roads.

The center of the storm -- which could become the first major cyclone to make landfall in the state in 26 years -- is expected to move very close to the main islands or cross land through Friday, the Central Pacific Hurricane Center said.

For live updates on the storm, click here

Officials fretted over the potential water impacts from the storm, which was moving at 6 mph.

"Lane, while it has been downgraded, is wide and very moist. And it's going to hang around for a while as it moves, because it is moving slowly," Honolulu Mayor Kirk Caldwell said. "And that is why we are taking so much precaution here."

Tom Travis, administrator of the Hawaii Emergency Agency, said the islands almost certainly will have more water -- rain, surf and surge -- than infrastructure can handle.

It could be so devastating Gov. David Ige has urged residents to set aside two weeks' worth of food and water.

He said Thursday that hurricane winds were expected to plow into the Big Island on Thursday night.

The storm's outer bands brought floodwaters to Hilo on the Big Island. Jonathan T. Correa recorded video using a drone over fields near Hilo Bay.

The storm's center, with maximum sustained winds near 125 mph, was in the Pacific about 190 miles south-southwest of the Big Island town of Kailua-Kona around 11 a.m. HT (5 p.m. ET).

Forecaster Leigh Anne Eaton, from the Honolulu office of the National Weather Service, told reporters that Lane is moving into an area where wind shear will further weaken the storm.

But the storm will still be a major hurricane as the eye passes Hawaii, she said.

Forecasters think the storm will turn west -- away from the islands -- but are uncertain when that will happen.

Track the storm here

Rain causes landslides

Landslides are a concern, with 10-30 inches of rain forecast through the weekend -- and slides were already happening on the Big Island as the storm's outer bands hit Thursday morning.

On the Big Island's northern tip, landslides were blocking parts of Route 19, the county civil defense agency said.

About 3 to 19.15 inches of rain had already fallen on parts of the Big Island in the period from 9 a.m. Wednesday to 9 a.m. Thursday, the National Weather Service office in Honolulu said.

Buses around Honolulu have been picking up some residents and taking them to shelters. All public schools canceled classes until further notice, and many state employees have been asked to stay home.

Tropical storm force winds (39-73 mph) stretch out to 140 miles, so even if the hurricane doesn't make landfall, it could have widespread impact.

A hurricane warning is in effect for the Big Island as well as Maui County and Oahu -- meaning hurricane conditions are expected there. Kauai and Niihau are under a hurricane watch, meaning hurricane conditions are possible and that winds of at least 39 mph are anticipated in the comings days.

Why is Hurricane Lane so rare?

The Central Pacific gets few hurricanes and tropical storms; the Atlantic or Eastern Pacific usually see many more named storms.

Hawaii is a small target in a vast ocean, and isn't often threatened. Hawaii gets a named storm within 60 miles of its coastline about once every four years on average, forecasters say.

Lane could become a further rarity if its center crosses land. Only two hurricanes have made landfall in Hawaii since the 1950s: Hurricane Dot in 1959, and Hurricane Iniki in 1992.

Maui includes helicopters in emergency plans

Maui County Mayor Alan Arakawa told CNN affiliate KHON that a lot of rain will be "very problematic."

He is worried that if waves reach 20 feet on the south shore of Maui, roadways could be overwhelmed and tens of thousands of people could be cut off from emergency crews.

Arakawa said officials are looking at emergency helicopter services in case they need to move people.

"We're going to have to just bear down and wait like everybody else to see what really happens when the storm hits us," he told KHON. "I'm hoping and all us here are praying the storm dissipates and disappears, but from all indications we are going to have heavy flooding and high winds no matter where Lane decides to go."

Authorities are asking people to seek shelter before it's too late or to stay in their homes if they believe those structures can withstand hurricane winds or storm surge.

Many others are leaving. Long lines were seen at airports in Honolulu as hundreds of people tried to catch flights out of the islands before the storm comes closer.

The 15 airports throughout the state will remain open as long they don't suffer damage to their infrastructure or the debris "makes flight operations unsafe," the Hawaii Department of Transportation said in a statement.

The US Coast Guard ordered Honolulu County ports closed Thursday. Hawaii and Maui County ports had already been closed.

President Donald Trump approved a disaster declaration ahead of the storm.

In a statement announcing Trump's approval, Gov. Ige said Hawaii had submitted the request for a Presidential Major Disaster Declaration to help with the impact the hurricane may have in the islands.

"The approval of the Presidential Disaster Declaration means that Hawai'i will have quick and efficient access to federal resources in the wake of Hurricane Lane, as our communities and residents recover from any damage and losses caused by the storm. We are grateful to the President and FEMA for the swift approval of our request as our state braces for the severe weather ahead," the governor said.

Mississippi Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 307519

Reported Deaths: 7096
CountyCasesDeaths
DeSoto20772248
Hinds19888408
Harrison17489302
Rankin13311275
Jackson13097243
Madison9895210
Lee9856169
Jones8290160
Forrest7523146
Lauderdale7187237
Lowndes6262144
Lamar610584
Lafayette6027117
Washington5280132
Bolivar4769129
Oktibbeha455297
Panola4442103
Pearl River4419139
Warren4280118
Marshall4273100
Pontotoc416472
Monroe4057132
Union403675
Neshoba3987176
Lincoln3869108
Hancock372085
Leflore3468124
Sunflower329389
Tate322681
Pike3180104
Scott310572
Yazoo304368
Alcorn297764
Itawamba296776
Copiah292965
Coahoma289677
Simpson287484
Tippah284668
Prentiss275659
Marion265779
Wayne261341
Leake261073
Grenada254982
Covington254580
Adams245882
Newton244859
George237847
Winston225981
Tishomingo222067
Jasper219748
Attala213273
Chickasaw204857
Holmes186471
Clay182454
Stone179131
Clarke176876
Tallahatchie175240
Calhoun163230
Yalobusha158836
Smith158534
Walthall130543
Greene129433
Lawrence126223
Noxubee125933
Montgomery125542
Perry125138
Carroll120826
Amite120041
Webster113432
Jefferson Davis105432
Tunica102525
Claiborne101330
Benton97225
Kemper95226
Humphreys94332
Franklin81823
Quitman78916
Choctaw72817
Jefferson64828
Wilkinson64727
Sharkey49617
Issaquena1686
Unassigned00

Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Cases: 518899

Reported Deaths: 10712
CountyCasesDeaths
Jefferson753641487
Mobile37763798
Madison33859494
Tuscaloosa25266443
Montgomery23962565
Shelby23106238
Baldwin20631300
Lee15524165
Calhoun14284311
Morgan14139268
Etowah13662345
Marshall11957219
Houston10380278
Elmore9993200
Limestone9811147
Cullman9470188
St. Clair9426234
Lauderdale9215227
DeKalb8746181
Talladega8058171
Walker7087275
Jackson6754110
Autauga6723103
Blount6483135
Colbert6203130
Coffee5399112
Dale4767110
Russell428838
Franklin419982
Chilton4083109
Covington4053114
Tallapoosa3893146
Escambia387674
Dallas3527149
Chambers3499122
Clarke346360
Marion3065100
Pike305875
Lawrence295395
Winston272372
Bibb256258
Marengo248661
Geneva245875
Pickens232959
Barbour224755
Hale218775
Butler212266
Fayette208960
Henry187844
Cherokee182044
Randolph176941
Monroe171440
Washington164038
Macon154548
Clay149354
Crenshaw149257
Cleburne146041
Lamar139234
Lowndes136453
Wilcox124327
Bullock121340
Conecuh109028
Perry107926
Sumter102932
Coosa99228
Greene90734
Choctaw58724
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Sunshine continues into the work week with temperatures climbing well above average on Monday. But as clouds increase with slight rain chances into mid-week, we may see temperatures a bit cooler than average toward the end of the week.
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