PHOTOS: Maui Rain Totals Pale in Comparison to Oahu and Kauai

March 6, 2012, 6:49 PM HST · Updated March 7, 8:55 AM
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By Tuesday afternoon, radar imagery shifted attention away from Oahu and Kauai, and over to Maui. Wet roadways lent to a slower than normal afternoon commute for Maui motorists. This photo shows the wet roadways along Kaahumanu Avenue looking into Kahului from Wailuku. Photo by Wendy Osher.

By Wendy Osher

(Update: 6:06 a.m. 3/7/12) A Flash Flood Watch was cancelled this morning as the system that brought torrential rains to portions of the state over the last few days, weakened and moved east of the islands.

On Maui, the Puukukui rain gauge showed about an inch of rainfall overnight as the storm passed over the Valley Isle. There was also over an inch of rainfall in Kula over a 12-hour period. Today, we can expect a 30% chance of showers with new rainfall amounts of less than a tenth of an inch possible.

Hydrology reports on Monday showed very little rain totals over Maui County over the 24 hours period through 5:45 p.m. Molokai Airport recorded the highest total in the county at 1.4 inches for the period.

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That is in high contrast to the western portion of the state where 12.74 inches fell at Wainiha on Kauai over the same period. Also on Kauai, 8.45 inches fell at Hanalei, 5 inches was reported at Kilohana, and 4.17 inches fell at Anahola, according to NWS rain gauges. Heavy rainfall was also reported across Oahu where 9.15 inches of rain fell over the 24-hour period through 5:45 p.m. on 3/6/12. That was followed by Niu Valley with 7.6 inches, and the Hawaii Kai Golf Course with 6.92 inches over the same period.

(Update: 9:48 p.m. 3/6/12) The National Weather Service has extended a Flood Advisory for Maui until 12:45 a.m. At 9:24 p.m., radar showed heavy rain continuing to move across the island from the southwest.

(Update: 7 p.m. 3/6/12) A Flood Watch has been upgraded to an Advisory for the island of Maui. The Flood Advisory is in effect until 9:45 p.m. At 6:48 p.m., the National Weather Service reported an area of heavy rain moving onshore from the southwest.

(Posted: 6:45 p.m. 3/6/12)  The National Weather Service extended a Flash Flood Watch for Maui County until 6 a.m. on Wednesday, March 7, 2012.

Radar imagery at 6 p.m., showed a shift in focus with unsettled weather expected to impact mainly Oahu and Maui overnight.

Forecasters from the NWS say the threat of heavy rain and thunderstorms will continue tonight as a trough int he upper atmosphere over Kauai will keep the atmosphere unstable.

Hydrology reports show very little rain totals over Maui County over the last 24 hours.  Molokai Airport recorded the highest total in the county at 1.4 inches for the 24-hour period ending at 5:45 p.m. on 3/6/12.

Maui rain, 3/6/12. Photo by Wendy Osher

That is in high contrast to the western portion of the state where 12.74 inches fell at Wainiha on Kauai over the same period.  Also on Kauai, 8.45 inches fell at Hanalei, 5 inches was reported at Kilohana, and 4.17 inches fell at Anahola, according to NWS rain gauges.   Heavy rainfall was also reported across Oahu where 9.15 inches of rain fell over the 24-hour period through 5:45 p.m. on 3/6/12.  That was followed by Niu Valley with 7.6 inches, and the Hawaii Kai Golf Course with 6.92 inches over the same period.

The Flash Flood Warnings for both Oahu and Kauai have since expired, but prolonged saturation and impacts of the storm prompted a proclamation issued by the Governor earlier today.

A Flash Flood Watch remains in effect for most of the state.  That means that conditions may develop that lead to flash flooding.

The public is reminded that runoff can cause hazardous driving conditions due to ponding, reduced visibility and poor braking action.  Individuals and motorists should not cross fast flowing water in their vehicles or on foot.  As the National Weather Service says, “Turn Around, Don’t Drown.”

Wailuku drainage ditch, 3/6/12. Photo by Wendy Osher

Kahului Harbor, 3/6/12. Photo by Wendy Osher

Maui rain at 'Iao, 3/6/12. Photo by Wendy Osher

Maui rain, 3/6/12. Photo by Wendy Osher

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