Maui News

Maui Public Advised to Prepare for Flooding; Excessive Rain Expected Into Monday

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PC: NOAA/NWS Kona Low approaches the state. Radar imagery 12.5.21 4:04 p.m.

The County of Maui continues under a flash flood watch and residents should anticipates a round of excessive rains late afternoon and evening due to the “Kona Low” weather system.  The County has been working closely with the National Weather Service which anticipates rains will be most impactful late today leading into Monday.

There is currently a Flood WARNING in effect for Maui until 6:30 p.m., and a Flood Advisory for Lānaʻi until 6:15 p.m.. There’s also a Flood Warning in effect for the Big Island of Hawaiʻi until 6:30 p.m.

The NWS expects the islands of Maui, Molokaʻi and Lānaʻi to experience effects including high winds, excessive rains and  high surf, especially on west facing shores.  The NWS has issued a high wind warning for the summit of Haleakalā.  

“As this unstable system continues to deliver large amounts of rain to Maui County, please prepare your household before flooding begins,” said Maui Mayor Michael Victorino.  “If you are in a flood prone area, take all necessary precautions to ensure the safety of you and your family.”

“The Emergency Operations Center has been activated with partners from the Maui Police Department, Maui Fire Department, American Red Cross and the Department of Housing and Human Concerns, among others,” said Herman Andaya, administrator of the Maui Emergency Management Agency.  “We are planning for potential needs that may arise from this ‘Kona Low,’” said Andaya.

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MEMA is working with social service agencies to notify the homeless population of the potential threat of flash flooding, especially in flood prone areas. MEMA, in conjunction with the American Red Cross, is prepared to open shelters should evacuations become necessary.Last night, a portion of the Piʻilani Hwy near Pahihi Gulch was washed out and the road is impassable at this time.  County Public Works crews were on scene to assess the road damage and repairs should begin early this week.  The public is urged to avoid the area.

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The Department of Parks and Recreation has closed Baldwin Beach Park due to flooding. Haleakalā National Park is  also closed due to high winds and winter weather. MEMA is also in regular communication with dam/reservoir owners to alert them to monitor the water levels of their respective reservoirs and take needed safety precautions.

Due to significant expected rainfall over the next two days, the Department of Environmental Management advises all residents connected to the County’s wastewater (sewer) system  to  minimize toilet flushing, bathing, and using washers and dishwashers, now through Wednesday morning. 

MEMA urges the public to prepare by the doing the following:  1.  Have an emergency kit ready;  2.  Have a plan – know what  to do in case you are affected by the flooding; and 3.  Be Informed

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Make a Plan

  • Plan escape routes – ensure all family members know where to go and how to get out.
  • Meeting place – choose a physical location to meet if communication between family members is down.
  • Family communication – identify a family member who lives out-of-state who everyone can notify when they are safe.

Pack a 14-day ‘Go-Kit’ for your family

  • Change of clothes and sturdy shoes
  • 1 gallon of water per person per day
  • Non-perishable foods
  • Face coverings, gloves, and sanitizer
  • First aid kit
  • Battery-powered or crank-powered radio
  • Flashlight
  • Batteries
  • Manual can opener
  • Hygiene supplies
  • Whistle
  • Important documents

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