HURRICANES COMING FOR SURE – SO LET’S BE PREPARED!
WINDS AND RAINS IMMINENT:
To date, Hurricane Iselle has not deviated from its course and will hit the Big Island this afternoon – with PLENTY OF RAIN (7-12 inches) AND WINDS (70+ MPH). FOR US IN HAWAII KAI THIS MEANS WE HAVE TO BE PREPARED FOR RAINS AND WINDS OF LESS INTENSITY BUT ARE CLEARLY IN DANGER OF FLOODING AND WIND DAMAGE!
If Hurricane Iselle were not enough, within hours, a strengthened HURRICANE JULIO will follow, though suspected at this point to veer to the north of the islands. Nonetheless we have to be prepared for a doubleheader hurricane weekend.
Yes, hurricane paths and speeds are predictable and can be charted out by the hour, but hurricanes by their nature are unpredictable. They can turn to the left or the right as much as 90 degrees without notice (as I have experienced in East Timor). Below are a few reminders and phone numbers you might want to keep handy over the next few days:
EMERGENCY SHELTER AVAILABLE IN HAWAII KAI: Kaiser High School has been designated as Hawaii Kai’s place of shelter. If you don’t feel safe at home, come to Kaiser HS located at 511 Lunalilo Home Road, just next to the Fire Station. It opens at 10 PM tonight, Thursday, August 7, 2014. According to the DOE announcement however, pets will not be allowed in the shelter area.
EMERGENCY SUPPLIES STILL AVAILABLE IN HAWAII KAI: My office has checked with our stores and gas stations in case you have not stocked up on a safe supply of goods (7 days recommended). Inventories below reflect supplies as of Thursday morning and could vary throughout the day, so best to call numbers below if you want certainty:
Safeway (396-6337) - NO water, AAA & AA batteries only
Costco (396-5538) - NO water, NO batteries, NO propane
Walgreens (395-9023) - YES water, AAA & AA & D batteries only
Longs (395-9491) - NO Water, AAA & AA batteries only
City Mill (396-5151) - NO Water, AAA & AA & D batteries only, YES propane, NO sandbag
GASOLINE STILL AVAILABLE IN HAWAII KAI:
All of Hawaii Kai’s stations report they have gas but again, call if you want to be sure:
Union 76 Station at Koko Marina- 395-2133
Chevron Hawaii Kai at Koko Marina- 396-1110
Aloha Station at the 7-11 in Hawaii Kai – 395-7111
Tesoro Station on Keahole Street- 397-1569
SCHOOLS/UH: all public schools and the University of Hawaii will be closed on Friday, August 8th.
THE BUS/HANDIVAN: There is no Bus or Handivan service available starting 10pm Thursday night, August 7, 2014.
VOTING IN SATURDAY’S PRIMARY ELECTION: The Office of Elections says “business as usual” unless otherwise noted. NO contingency plans have been announced and they will announce any changes through the media.
EMERGENCY NUMBERS: (assuming phone services working)
Electrical outage: call 548-7311 or 855-304-1212
Water issues: call 748-5000
The surf is expected to be an additional few feet, so be wary of big waves and damage they can cause to persons and property. If uncertain about your location, check your phone book for the inundation zone for your area. FYI, residents living on the makai side of Kalanianaole Hwy, the inundation zone is up to Koko Marina Shopping Center.
EMERGENCY BROADCASTS: Listen to KSSK for updated emergency information as 92.3 FM, or 590 AM. All of the major TV stations will also be providing updates and storm videos between regular broadcasting.
OTHER HOUSEHOLD PRECAUTIONS:
AIRBORNE OBJECTS: 50-60 MPH winds can make projectiles out of anything not tied down outside your home. Tie it down or weight it down, or bring it inside if it fits.
DRIVING: we are all advised to stay off the roads as much as possible; but if need be, be brief, and watch out for flashfloods/flooding on some parts of the road. Check your brakes after driving through deep water.
GUTTERS: Water kills a house and should be directed as far away as possible as quickly as possible. Check your rain gutters to make sure they are clean enough for large amounts of heavy rains to flow through them and away from your house.
FLOODING AROUND YOUR HOUSE: if you expect flooding on any side of your house, wood, bricks, and sand are good barricades. (Unfortunately City Mill has no sand bags left in stock.) The best solution may be to dig a small trench for the water to flow away from your house.
THE PSYCHOLOGY OF HURRICANES AND STORMS: Yes, storms and especially hurricanes are powerful and scary, but with adequate preparations we can minimize the downside. Recall with less than adequate lead time on Kauai, Hurricane Iniki in 1992 resulted in a minimal loss of life (6) but extensive property damage of $1.8 billion. Now it’s our turn to fight this 22 year old battle again.
I’M AVAILABLE: call 911 for an emergencies, but if you can’t reach them or if your family is in danger, or if a senior citizen is in need of assistance, etc., call me for assistance. My cell 781-9931 (but texting is the best).
Aloha, Representative Gene Ward