Kupuna get needed help to prepare for Kilo’s arrival

As much attention as Kilo’s been getting over the last couple of days, there are some, maybe many, who were surprised to hear Saturday that there’s a storm near our islands and that it could be a hurricane that affects us next week.

The problem is they may not be prepared if it does.

At the first-ever emergency preparedness information event at Kahala Mall, the East Oahu Rotary Club called today’s event “perfect timing.” The group planned this earlier in the summer and said with what is now Tropical Depression Kilo heading our way, the urgency to stay prepared is higher than ever.

“Amazingly enough, the first three people we talked to didn’t know a hurricane was coming,” said club spokesman John Strandberg. “So we explained why we’re here and they said ‘OK, tell me more.'”

Members urged people to take advantage of “push alerts.” Jamie Apuna of the East Honolulu Rotary Club said “a lot of people don’t know about the new Nixle app that texts you emergency broadcasts — storms, brushfires, road closures, water main breaks. That’s been popular, too.”

With the help of social media through smart phones and desktop computers, more people are connected to the latest news than ever before.

But not everyone has access to the internet. “Our kupuna don’t exactly know what’s going on.” Strandberg said.

“(They) don’t have the means of computers,” said Waianae Coast Rotary Club member Don Arakaki. “A lot of them on the Waianae coast don’t even have televisions. So reach out, call, we all have that neighbor, auntie, uncle — call and check on them.”

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