Earlier this year, forecasters predicted that 2018’s hurricane season could be as eventful as 2017’s devastating turn of events. What couldn’t be predicted was that Hawaii, which generally isn’t a target of the largest cyclones, would be facing its most significant weather event in decades. Hurricane Lane, which previously reached Category 5 status earlier this week, is slowly barrelling toward the Aloha State as a Category 4 storm. CNN reports that Lane, which could be the biggest storm to make landfall on Hawaii in 26 years, is only lumbering forth at 7mph, which (as NOAA points out in the below clip) could place Hawaii at risk for prolonged downpours.
Unusually warm Pacific waters have sustained Lane, and Hawaii Governor David Ige is urging tourists to prepare for the worst. Although federal aid (and an emergency proclamation) has already been approved in advance of the storm, it’s possible that parts of the state could be without power for weeks.
Currently, Lane is sustaining winds of over 130 mph, and the storm’s center could possibly make landfall on Friday. Before that time, the storm’s outer winds will continue to churn up waves and other dangerous conditions. All who are on the island (and who are essentially trapped there) have been cautioned to gather two weeks of supplies, including water and food.
Hawaii News Now reports that Honolulu Mayor Kirk Caldwell has urged both residents and tourists to take this storm seriously. The greatest fear is, as he says, “We do not want to see what happened in Puerto Rico, and we do that by making sure we’re prepared.” Following Hurricane Maria in September 2017, the Caribbean U.S. territory is still struggling to recover after delayed federal aid and a major set of SNAFUs regarding the island’s electrical grid.
Still, the hardiest of Hawaiian residents are keeping a sense of humor while they wait out the storm’s approach…