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What the HAIL? That’s what many in Hawaii have been asking during this week of wild weather, which doesn’t seem to be leaving us any time soon. Waimanalo and Hawaii Kai were the first on Tuesday to get these ice cubes from the sky. Yesterday, the National Weather Service reported hail in the channel between Maui and Big Island, and this morning, people on the windward side of Kauai and Oahu woke up to golf-ball sized hail.
(Top) Palm-sized hail on Oahu that has cracked car windows and dented cars. (Bottom) My friend took this picture of fallen hail near Kaneohe Bay. She’s visiting from Chicago and said she thought she left this behind.
This has been the most hail Hawaii has ever seen, according to some long-time residents still scratching their heads at the peculiar icy objects falling from above. And because this is fairly new to people here, they’re not quite sure what to make of it. Some felt like they were in a war zone, dodging hail and hearing it slam into their rooftops. Others worried about their cars getting damaged. Most made light of the situation, collecting hail in coolers and storing them in their freezers. Free ice or frozen souvenirs? One caller on the radio this morning said he’s going to make shave ice with the hail. I couldn’t tell if he was serious or joking, but because I didn’t even hear the slightest chuckle or crack in his voice, it led me to believe he wasn’t joking. LOL, only in Hawaii!
Others, like my dad, have discovered that falling hail and driving do not mix well. He works on the Kaneohe Marine Corp Base, which apparently got the most hail, and had to use his hazard lights while driving because of poor visibility. He said that many were pulling to the side, under the safety of trees.
Expect more bad weather through early next week – thunderstorms, flash floods, h3 winds and heavy rains.
The National Weather Service issued a flash flood warning for Oahu until 10:15 a.m. today and may extend it if rain persists. Maui County is under a flash flood warning until 8:15 a.m. The flash flood warning is still in effect for Kauai, which also has highway closures due to hazardous conditions and flooding.
Be sure to watch Bruce Fisher’s weekly podcast later today. He’ll have an entire show about the recent crazy weather in Hawaii and how tourists can still manage to have fun without the sun.Photo Credit: Chantel Franco (hail, top); Robyn Palomar (hail, bottom); Zhulieta Ibisheva (weather)