Hawaii braces for monster Hurricane Lane, as US Navy submarines leave port
People were seen claiming the last sheets of plywood to board up their windows on Wednesday as Hurricane Lane, a powerful Category 4 storm, churns toward the island
The residents of Hawaii are bracing for a massive hurricane which is set to hit the state Thursday through Friday. People were seen emptying store shelves and claiming the last sheets of plywood to board up their windows on Wednesday as Hurricane Lane, a powerful Category 4 storm, churns towards the state.
Reports state that the storm is scheduled to hit the islands on Thursday with winds exceeding 100 mph. This will be the most powerful storm to hit Hawaii since Hurricane Iniki in 1992, according to reports.
A hurricane warning was issued for Maui County, the Big Island and Oahu by the National Weather Service on Wednesday. A hurricane watch has also been put in place for Kauai, Daily Mail reported.
The United States Navy ships and submarines, based in Hawaii, have also been instructed by higher authorities to leave the port in an effort to avoid damage to the fleet.
The hurricane was reportedly nearly 305 miles south of Kailua-Kona and was moving northwest toward the islands.
The hurricane was initially thought to be Category 5 level, however, Meteorologist Chevy Chevalier said that the winds slowed a little overnight from 160mph to 155mph, which promoted its downgrade to a Category 4.
Chevalier added that the hurricane could also be further downgraded to a Category 3 by Thursday. However, the meteorologist added that it would still be a major hurricane hitting the islands, and could cause significant damage.
He added that the hurricane is forecast to be downgraded to Category 2 by early Friday with winds up to 110mph and the centre located west of Hawaii Island and south of Honolulu.
"We expect it to gradually weaken as it gets closer to the islands. That being said, on our current forecast, as of the afternoon on Thursday, we still have it as a major hurricane," Chevalier said.
People in Hawaii cannot hop in their cars and drive to safety, the residents are generally confined to the islands and cannot escape the powerful winds and rain.
A resident of Kauai, Christyl Nagao, said: "Everyone is starting to buckle down at this point. Our families are here. We have businesses and this and that. You just have to man your fort and hold on tight. You're stuck here and resources might not get here in time," he said, according to Daily Mail.
Reports state that public schools in the region have been closed for the rest of the week and local government workers have been asked to stay at home, unless they are essential employees.
Multiple shelters have been readied to open up on Oahu, Maui, Molokai and Lanai and officials said that more would be opened on other islands as per the requirements.