11 p.m. UPDATE: Tropical Storm Watch Posted, NWS Maui County Forecast

August 29, 2015, 11:36 AM HST · Updated August 30, 1:15 AM
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***Updated at 11 p.m.***

By Meteorologist Malika Dudley

As of the 11 p.m. CPHC update, Ignacio has maximum sustained winds near 145 mph with higher gusts and is a category 4 hurricane. Ignacio has likely reached its peak intensity and is expected to weaken through Monday.

The system is moving northwest at 8 mph and is expected to pass to the northeast of the Big Island Monday.

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Hurricane force winds extend 30 miles from the center, tropical storm force winds extend 140 miles from the center.

Forecast details for Maui County (below in the 8:30 p.m. update) are still valid.

Maximum sustained winds for Jimena have decreased to near 130 mph and is still a category 4 hurricane. The system is expected to remain a major hurricane through Monday.

***Updated at 8:30 p.m.***

By Meteorologist Malika Dudley

The National Weather Service says Hurricane Ignacio will continue to approach from the southeast, bringing an increased potential for tropical storm conditions to the Big Island and Maui County.

Due to uncertainty in the exact track of Ignacio, it is still too early to determine which island is at most risk.

The chance for hurricane conditions at this time very small. Also, the chance for tropical storm conditions at this time ranges from 33 to 47 percent. This represents a general upward trend since the last forecast.

Although the latest forecast is for sustained winds to remain below tropical storm force of 39 mph, 34 knots, only a small change in the track of Ignacio could result in higher winds.

Swells generated by Ignacio will increase along east and southeast facing shores of the island of Maui, and will result in surf heights reaching up to 15 to 20 feet on Monday through Tuesday. The high surf is expected to create dangerous currents. Some coastal inundation of low lying areas is expected especially at high tide.

Total rainfall amounts of 2 to 4 inches, with isolated amounts near 6 inches mainly in areas of higher terrain, are possible.

***Updated at 5:30 p.m. to include information from the Central Pacific Hurricane Center and the National Hurricane Center’s 5 p.m. updates.***

By: Jamilia Epping

The Central Pacific Hurricane Center’s 5 p.m. update shows that Hurricane Ignacio is now 525 miles east-southeast of Hilo; 605 miles ESE of Hāna; 640 miles ESE of Kahului; 675 miles ESE of Kaunakakai; and 665 miles ESE of Lānaʻi City.

Its maximum sustained winds have increased slightly since 2 p.m. to 140 miles per hour.

Hurricane Ignacio is moving to the northwest at 9 mph.

A Tropical Storm Watch remains in effect for the Big Island.

Maui County is also now under the Tropical Storm Watch.

A Tropical Storm Warning has also been issued, thus far, only for the waters off the Big Island to the east and southeast.

CPHC says tropical storm force winds could impact the Big Island as early as Sunday night.

Large swells also bring the potential for dangerous surf for East and South facing shores.

CPHC analysis shows that southwesterly wind shear is beginning to have an effect on Hurricane Ignacio. The shear is expected to increase as the storm nears the islands, beginning a general weakening trend that is expected to start on Sunday.

As of 5 p.m., Hurricane Jimena was located 1,631 miles from Hilo. The National Hurricane Center has maintained watch over the storm that has picked up in speed, moving 13 mph toward the west-northwest.

Maximum sustained wind speeds remain at 140 mph.

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**Updated at 11:10 a.m. to include information from the Central Pacific Hurricane Center and the National Hurricane Center’s 11 a.m. advisories.***

By Jamilia Epping

As of the Central Pacific Hurricane Center’s 11 a.m. update, Hurricane Ignacio was 585 miles east-southeast of Hilo, moving at a pace one mile faster than earlier in the morning at 9 miles per hour.

A major highlight of the 11 a.m. advisory is the increase in maximum sustained winds, making Hurricane Ignacio a Category 4 hurricane. Ignacio is currently holding wind speeds of 140 mph, an increase of 25 mph since 8 a.m.

CPHC reports that additional strengthening is expected Saturday before the storm sets on a weakening trend.

Hurricane Ignacio has shifted slightly, now traveling in a northwest direction. The latest track continues to show the storm passing north of the island chain.

A Tropical Storm Watch remains in effect for the Big Island.

Meanwhile in the Eastern Pacific, Hurricane Jimena, being tracked by the National Hurricane Center, has turned west-northwest and is expect to continue in this direction as it increases in forward speed through Monday.

Hurricane Jimena was about 1,701 miles from Hilo, as of 11 a.m, and has maintained Category 4 hurricane strength at 140 mph, which is expected to continue through Monday.

***Original story posted with information from the 5 a.m. CPHC and NHC updates.***

By: Jamilia Epping

Hurricane Ignacio continued to strengthen throughout the night and has reached Category 3 hurricane status, as of 5 a.m. As a result of Ignacio’s current path and strength, the Big Island has been placed under a Tropical Storm Watch.

The Central Pacific Hurricane Center says that as of 8 a.m., Ignacio was about 525 miles east-southeast of Hilo, traveling at a speed of about 8 miles per hour in a west-northwest direction.

Maximum sustained winds held by Hurricane Ignacio have increased to 115 mph with some higher gusts. The storm is expected to continune to strenthen throughout Saturday, with an expected gradual weakening Sunday and Monday. Outer winds of Ignacio have the potential to affect the Big Island by early Monday morning.

Hurricane Ignacio is currently in an area with very weak shear, providing environmental conditions that encourage the strengthening of the storm. Warm water temperatures and continued light shear are on the storm’s immediate track. By Sunday, however, southwest shear is forecast to gradually increase.

Hurricane Hunters will conduct a reconnaissance flight Saturday morning. The flights will be flown every 12 hours through Sunday morning, when they will increase to every six hours.

A Tropical Storm Watch means that tropical storm conditions are possible within the next 48 hours. CPHC says that although Hurricane Ignacio is currently tracking north of the island chain, the Big Island is within the storm’s cone of uncertainty, making the watch necessary.

The National Hurricane Center contiues to issue notices for Hurricane Jimena. As of 5 a.m., Jimena was about 1,751 miles  from Hilo, moving in a west direction at 8 mph. The storm is expected to take a west-northwest motion later in the day Saturday and continue through Monday.

Hurricane Jimena is currently classified as a Category 4 hurricane with maximum sustained winds near 150 mph.

NHC says that Hurricane Jimena may see fluctuations in intensity, but is expected to maintain major hurricane status through Monday.

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