Hawaii Island residents dealing with storm-related lightning, power outages

Photo courtesy Keola Mata
Photo courtesy Keola Mata

UPDATE: The National Weather Service has cancelled the Flash Flood Warning and the evacuation shelter at Paauilo Gym has been closed.

 

Flooding, lightning, power outages — Hawaii Island is still feeling the effects of the storm that is lingering around the state.

Viewer Micah Alameda drove through a flooded a muddy road Wednesday night in O’okala on the Hamakua coastline. He says he’s never seen flooding that bad in that area. He drove by several stranded cars and says he’s lucky to have made it through safely.

Hawaii Island police report that a downed tree has closed North Peck Mt. View two-thirds of the way up in front of 18-4310 Peck Road.

The American Red Cross has opened a shelter at Paauilo Gym for residents evacuated from their homes due to flash flooding.

The National Weather Service is reminding people on the Big Island to stay indoors if they see any lightning, with parts of the island receiving hundreds of strikes per hour. Flooding wasn’t the only problem on the Big Island on Wednesday. There were also lightning strikes, and plenty of them.

The National Weather Service reminds people to try to stay inside if they see lightning. Parts of the Big Osland saw hundreds of strikes per hour, which caused power outages on parts of the island.

Meteorologist Tom Birchard with the National Weather Service described the peak of the lightning strikes, “Upwards of 600 strikes within a 30 minute period, this is all over land, just upslope from Hilo.”

Big Island Civil defense reported around 220 customers without power, saying crews won’t be able to start work to fix the problem until the lightning calms down.

Civil Defense also reports that there aren’t any major road closures.

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