Recovery

Hurricane/Tropical Storm Lane Poured Record Rainfall on East Hawaii

The National Weather Service says the amount of rain dumped on Mountain View by Hurricane Lane is the third-highest rainfall total from a tropical cyclone in the country since 1950.

by Nelson Daranciang, The Honolulu Star-Advertiser / August 27, 2018
James Fujita, left, and Reid Fujita take down plywood boards that were to protect their store from Tropical Storm Lane along Waikiki Beach, Saturday, Aug. 25, 2018, in Honolulu. Federal officials said Saturday that torrential rains are now the biggest threat to Hawaii after the once-powerful hurricane that threatened the island state was downgraded to a tropical storm, and they urged people to continue to take the storm seriously. AP Photo/John Locher

(TNS) — The National Weather Service says the amount of rain dumped on Mountain View by Hurricane Lane is the third-highest rainfall total from a tropical cyclone in the country since 1950.

The preliminary total for Mountain View, subject to final quality control, is 51.53 inches of rain between noon Wednesday and 4 a.m. Sunday. That's more than 4 feet.

The highest total rainfall from a tropical cyclone in the United States is 60.58 inches measured at Nederland, Texas, in 2017 from Hurricane Harvey. The second highest is 52 inches recorded at the Kanalo­hu­luhulu Ranger Station on Kauai from Hurricane Hiki in 1950.

Hilo also experienced record rainfall from Lane. The Weather Service says 36.76 inches of rain fell on Hilo Airport between 12 a.m. Wednesday and midnight Saturday. That is the most rainfall for a four-day period in Hilo on the record books, which date back to 1949. And the 15 inches of rain that fell Friday was the fifth-highest calendar day total for Hilo on record.

The Weather Service canceled all flash flood watches and area flood advisories Sunday as Lane continued its movement southwest of the state. The service said we can still expect showers through Tuesday, with windward locations expected to receive the bulk of the rain.

NWS Meteorologist Maureen Ballard said, "Lingering moisture remains over the area from an unstable air mass as the weather transitions back into the normal tradewind pattern."

At the height of Lane's effect on the islands, rain bands from the storm dumped torrential rainfall on the east side of the Big Island, causing flash flooding, landslides and road closures. The flooding also forced evacuations and water rescues.

Heavy rain from Lane also caused flash flooding on parts of Maui, especially along Hana Highway.

Hawaiian Electric Co. says some of its crews are on the Valley Island helping Maui Electric repair transmission lines in West Maui that were damaged by Lane's high winds.

But even as the threat from Lane dissipated, another tropical storm appeared to be heading west toward the state. Tropical Storm Miriam developed in the eastern Pacific Ocean, about 2,000 miles east of the Hawaiian Islands, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. It had winds of about 50 mph and was moving west at 14 mph as of Sunday. The National Hurricane Center predicted that Miriam could strengthen into a Category 1 hurricane today.

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The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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