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What you Need to Know About Tropical Storm Darby

The storm is set to bring some heavy weather to the Islands this weekend.


Tropical storm Darby is set to crash into the Hawaiian Islands this weekend—with the Big Island and Maui first in line. Current predictions have the heavier parts of the storm swinging just north of Oʻahu, causing heavy rain, strong gusts of wind, possible mudslides and large surf.


“It’s unclear what the impacts could be at this time because we have two massive mountains—Mauna Kea and Mauna Loa—that could impact the track of this storm,” said Mayor Kirk Caldwell at a press conference Friday afternoon. “We also have some shear going on that could perhaps take this storm in a more northerly direction.”


A 30- to 40-percent chance of 40-mile-an-hour winds and heavy surf crashing on roads by late Saturday night and into Sunday have the Police Department, the Fire Department, first responders and lifeguards on full alert. Gov. David Ige signed an emergency proclamation on Friday, July 22, authorizing state funding for disaster-related relief. Here are a couple of things you should do to prepare for the possibility of a tropical storm:


Secure everything kept outside. With heavy gusts of wind, even full garbage cans can get blown away. Be sure to secure lawn furniture, or any furniture on your lanai.


Stock up on batteries and water. In a worst case scenario, electricity and water services may be disrupted, so it’s best to have flashlights with back up batteries. If you want to avoid bottled water, fill jugs up from the tap. “We’ve planned for the very worst, but hope for the best,” says Caldwell.


Stay out of the mountains. Postpone Sunday hikes for your sake as well as that of emergency personnel who may have to risk their lives to pull someone out of a mudslide. Just because it's sunny one hour doesn’t mean things won’t get messy the next.


Be cautious near the coasts. Check with a lifeguard before going in or near the water. Tropical storm Estelle, behind Darby, will continue to kick up heavy surf through Monday and Tuesday.


Sign up for Nixle, an emergency alert system for officials to communicate directly to your phone. Opt-in by texting your zip code to 888777.


Camping sites will remain open and bus routes will continue as scheduled until further notice. Continue to monitor local media for updates on the course of the storm and possible service interruptions.


“This is our first storm this hurricane season that has gotten close, and you can see there are others lining up behind,” said Caldwell, as a reminder that now is the best time to make preparations for future, potentially more dangerous storms.

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Honolulu Magazine September 2018
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