Heavy rains ease, rescue efforts improve after Hawaii storm

Erika Holt
April 18, 2018

‪Kauai #hitraffic alert: Flooding conditions at 7:45 am on Kuhio Hwy near Kapaa Bypass after more than 27 inches of rain hit the island in 24 hours.

As the heavy rain and devastating flooding started to subside on the Hawaiian Island of Kauai Monday, rescue teams worked to help those stranded, including a large group of around 40 tourists. Coralie Chun Matayoshi, chief executive officer of the Red Cross in Hawaii, told the Associated Press that the shelter briefly ran out of food and water when weather grounded helicopters, keeping the Hawaii Guard from delivering supplies to the shelter.

Some of Kauai's citizens documented the record-breaking storm with social media, including Laird Hamilton's rescue of 15 stranded girls.

There were no reports of major injuries.

It's most likely that the rainfall over Hanalei that caused widespread flooding Saturday night set a new record, but a lost gage will make it hard to verify, according to National Weather Service officials.

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Gov. David Ige declared a state of emergency as a response to the flooding.

Hanalei Bridge was open only to emergency vehicles Monday, so one busload of people from the shelter was moved to another shelter, said Kauai County spokeswoman Sarah Blane. That's very close to the record of 28.54 inches set in the 24 hours between 4 a.m. March 4 and 5, 2012. She said she believed it was from a buffalo farm near the Hanalei River.

"What we're really focusing on right now is. search and rescue and a thorough damage assessment", Carvalho said.

Jeff Culverhouse, manager and partner of a Hanalei strip mall, was wishing for a hot shower as he pumped water out of elevators Monday.

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