Cold Front Moves Down Islands, Snow in Forecast for Big Island Summits

February 6, 2020, 11:58 AM HST · Updated February 7, 2:06 AM
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Cold Front Moves Down Islands, Snow in Forecast for Big Island Summits
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A cold front over the central islands will continue to move down the island chain through tonight, according to the latest Area Synopsis issued by the National Weather Service in Honolulu.

“The front will produce numerous showers, some heavy, and brings the possibility of thunderstorms to the area,” according to the NWS forecast.

The agency is forecasting cool northerly winds to follow behind the front, lingering into early next week.

The NWS says additional unsettled weather is possible early next week as another system moves north of the islands.

Maunakea snow. PC: (2.6.20) Subaru catwalk, Maunakea Weather Center, UH Institute for Astronomy.

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Winter Weather Advisory for Maunakea and Mauna Loa

Deep moisture along a front will move over the Big Island today and tonight, producing periods of snow showers and freezing rain. The threat of significant winter weather may extend into Friday.  A Winter Weather Advisory is in effect from noon today to 6 a.m. on Friday.

Snow showers and periods of freezing rain are expected with total snow accumulations of up to 5 inches in the forecast for summits above 10,500 feet.

Maui last saw snow atop Haleakalā during a winter storm last year that forced the closure of the summit for six days.

Big Island Summits High Wind Warning Through 11 a.m. Sunday:

A High Wind Warning is in effect for the summits of the Big Island through 11 a.m. on Sunday.  Southwest to west winds will increase over the Big Island summits. Sustained wind speed will range from 45 to 75 mph with localized gusts over 90 mph.

Kauaʻi Flood Warning Extended:

The National Weather Service in Honolulu has extended the Flash Flood Warning for the island of Kauaʻi until 2:15 p.m. HST on Thursday, Feb. 6, 2020.

At 10:54 a.m. HST, Kauaʻi emergency management reported that Kūhiō Highway remains closed at the Hanalei Bridge. Rainfall over the river basin has eased considerably, but it will take several hours for the runoff to subside enough to reopen the highway. The water level in Wainiha River also remains elevated.

Oʻahu Flood Advisory Until 2 p.m.

The National Weather Service in Honolulu has issued a Flood Advisory for the island of Oʻahu until 2 p.m. HST.  At 11 a.m., radar indicated an area of heavy rain falling at a rate of 1 to 2 inches from Kaneʻohe to Waimanalo. Additional rain continues over other areas of Oʻahu at rates up to 1 inch per hour. The rainfall in these areas may continue for a few hours before tapering off this afternoon.

Base Reflectivity radar image courtesy NOAA/NWS (11:35 a.m. HST, Thursday, Feb. 6, 2020).

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