The National Weather Service's Central
Pacific Hurricane Center in Honolulu has issued a tropical storm
warning and a hurricane watch for the Big Island as Hurricane
Flossie continues on a path south of the island.
The latest report
by the CPHC has Flossie, a Category 2 storm with sustained winds of
105 mph, located about 165 miles south-southeast of Hilo and 340
miles southeast of Honolulu. The center
predicts some further weakening as the day goes on.
According to the
report, strong winds, around 40 mph to 50 mph, with stronger gusts,
are likely to reach the Big Island by mid-morning (Hawaiian
Standard Time), as the storm passes the island. However, "any shift
in the forecast track towards the north, closer to the Big Island,
will result in higher winds," the CPHC said.
The storm's current
projected path will keep it south of the Hawaiian Islands and it is
expected to further decrease in strength to a tropical storm later
in the week, after it passes Oahu and Kauai.
The center is
project to pass about 80 miles south of the Big Island by
Surf on the Big
Island's south coast should reach 20 to 25 feet; on the eastern
shores, more likely in the 10- to 12-foot range.
rainfall, with five to 10 inches or more expected, with the
possibility of flash flooding.
The Big Island's
south coast could experience "significant flooding due to wave
[surges]; substantial shoreline erosion also is likely."
On the northeast
coast, "localized flooding and shore erosion is
Meanwhile, in the
Atlantic basin, Tropical Storm Dean, the fourth named storm of the
season, is on a path towards the Windward and Leeward Islands.
(See "Atlantic hurricane season heats up with Tropical Storm
As if the impending
storm's impact isn't enough, the Big Island experienced a magnitude
5.4 land-based earthquake Monday night, centered about four miles
from Kilauea Volcano's Puu Oo crater and 25 miles south of Hilo,
according to the U.S. Geological Survey's Hawaiian Volcano
The HVO reported
that despite the proximity to Puu Oo crater, there does not appear
to be "any changes... in the current eruption of Kilauea
Just two months
ago, a series of hundreds of small earthquakes occurred in the
upper east rift of Kilauea Volcano, forcing the closure of portions
of Hawaii Volcanoes National Park and causing the lava flow to
abruptly stop for about two weeks.
On July 21, four
new fissures opened and lava is now flowing to the east of Puu Oo
crater, in an area that has not seen an eruption in about 15 years.
Of the four fissures, only two still remain active, one just
The Dept. of Land
and Natural Resources has closed the Kahaualea Natural Area
Reserve, which includes Puu Oo crater and the new eruption site;
Kilauea's east rift, including Napau Trail and Campsite and Naulu
Trail; and the park's eastern boundary in the Puna district near
TravelWeekly.com's managing editor Kimberly Scholz, send e-mail to