State officials warn Hawaii residents to be prepared as a “Kona Low” weather system brings rain to the Hawaiian Islands over the next few days.
According to Hawaiʻi Emergency Management Agency (HI-EMA), as much as 25 inches of rain, along with flash floods, damaging winds and landslides will impact parts of the state.
“Rainfall on Friday and Saturday already has damaged roads and caused localized flooding, and the same weather system has driven dangerously high winds and surf, along with snow at high elevations,” HI-EMA stated. “Conditions are expected to worsen beginning Sunday afternoon, with effects lasting for several days this week.”
HI-EMA is monitoring the effects of the weather and coordinating with county, state, federal, and private sector partners to assist as needed, but the public also needs to be aware of the hazards and prepare for the worst. Here are some important steps you can take.
- During heavy rains or human-made structure failures such as a dam breach, flash flooding can occur quickly and without warning.
- Be prepared to evacuate and move immediately to higher ground. Do not wait for instructions to act.
- Do not cross fast-flowing water in your vehicle or on foot – Turn around, do not drown.
- Contact your property/casualty agent or broker about flood insurance, which is offered through the National Flood Insurance Program.
Visit https://dod.hawaii.gov/hiema/get-ready/ for links to each County website for free text-based notifications for the latest updates on natural and human-caused emergencies and disasters.
Make a Plan
- Plan escape routes – ensure all family members know where to go and how to get out.
- Meeting place – choose a physical location to meet if communication between family members is down.
- Family communication – identify a family member who lives out-of-state who everyone can notify when they are safe.
- Pack a 14-day ‘Go-Kit’ for your family
- Change of clothes and sturdy shoes
- One gallon of water per person per day
- Non-perishable foods
- Face coverings, gloves, and sanitizer
- First aid kit
- Battery-powered or crank-powered radio
- Manual can opener
- Hygiene supplies
- Important documents
Check on neighbors and loved ones to help ensure they are prepared for the challenges ahead.