Tropical Cyclones are approaching Hawaii, and a Hurricane warning has already been issued for The Big Island, mainly Hilo, Hawaii. Eastern and western coasts of the Hawaiian Islands are reported as being affected by both Hurricane Iselle and Hurricane Julio. Even the remnants of tropical depression Genevieve have strengthened to hurricane status and may even move north in the Pacific as a typhoon.
As of Wednesday, the status of Hurricane Iselle was uncertain. Right now the tropical system stands as a Category 1 hurricane and is expected to hit the Hawaiian islands on Thursday evening. Even if the storm makes landfall as a tropical storm, forecasters believe high winds and flooding are possible. There is already a Hurricane warning for The Big Island, a Tropical Storm warning for Maui, and a Tropical Storm watch for Honolulu and Oahu.
Earlier, forecasters were unsure if Hurricane Iselle would hit Hawaii as either a hurricane or tropical storm system. A report from the Associated Press listed on the U.S. News website stated weather officials had determined the system had strengthened on Wednesday afternoon and may hit the state as a hurricane with winds of up to 90 mph. If it does, it will be the first hurricane to hit Hawaii in over 20 years.
Tropical cyclones are approaching Hawaii and not only are forecasters keeping an eye on Hurricane Iselle, but also on Hurricane Julio. Julio became a Category 1 hurricane since forming as a tropical storm a few days ago. It is now the fifth hurricane to hit the Pacific this year and forecasters expect it to gain strength as it approaches Hawaii. It is tricky to know whether or not Hurricane Julio will hit land on Sunday, or head north of Hawaii because forecasters like Lixion Avlia, a senior forecaster with the National Hurricane Center, stated Julio was too far away to correctly determine its pathway.
Regarding systems and tropical cyclones turning into Hurricanes, the remnants of Tropical Depression Genevieve have recently turned into Hurricane Genevieve, according to The Weather Channel. On July 25, Genevieve started as a tropical depression which declined into a “post tropical-low” on July 27. On July 29, it grew back into a tropical depression and again lost power by July 31. However, on August 2, Genevieve once again became a tropical depression before forming into a tropical storm on August 5 and then was declared a hurricane on August 6. In fact, it may become a typhoon as it makes its way past the international date line on Thursday.
Tropical cyclones may be approaching Hawaii, but how both Hurricane Iselle and Hurricane Julio impact the islands depends on whether each system gains or loses its power by the time either one makes landfall. Even so, residents and businesses on the Hawaiian islands are gearing up for high surf and possible coastal flooding. According to Jason Hanna and Steve Almasy of CNN, schools on the Big Island and Maui are reported to be closed on Thursday. Bottled water was also sold out at a Costco in Honolulu. Though some residents of the Big Island are preparing for the worst from both Hurricane Iselle and Hurricane Julio, surfers were reported by local, long-term residents as being excited.
By Liz Pimentel