Winter Storm Pounds State with Strong Winds and High Surf

Feb 11, 2019

Credit Forest and Kim Starr / Flickr

Strong winds are expected to start decreasing today after a strong storm that hit the islands knocked out power, brought down trees, flooded coastal roads, and even brought snow.

Officials say the coating at 6,200 feet at Polipoli State Park on Maui could mark the lowest elevation snowfall ever recorded in the state.

At least five people were injured on Oʻahu. Two ground hornbill birds escaped from the Honolulu Zoo after the storm damaged their enclosure. Only one has been found. City officials are asking residents to call 911 with any information on the second bird's whereabouts.

The Big Island summits recorded winds of up to 191 miles per hour. Highway 19 has reopened after strong winds brought down utility poles along between mile markers 38 and 39. Honokaʻa Elementary and Honokaʻa High and Intermediate Schools are closed today due to the power outage.

On Kauaʻi, downed trees and malfunctioning traffic signals, caused by outages, interrupted traffic.

Crews with the State Department of Land and Natural Resources will begin clean up efforts across the state today. On Maui, six boats from the Lahaina Small Boat Harbor broke away from their moorings due to high surf and strong winds, and ended up on the rocky shoreline. Two other boats came ashore in Kihei and Molokai.

The National Weather Service says Hawaiʻi should expect "large, destructive surf, locally damaging winds, and periods of blustery showers across most of the state." Adding more "unsettled weather" could last until mid-week, giving way to typical trade wind pattersn toward the end of the week.