HONOLULU (KHON2) — Catastrophic flooding from Opaeula Stream prompted immediate evacuations in Haleiwa Town, including Weed Circle to Paalaa Rds, Joseph P. Leong Highway to the ocean, on Tuesday, March 9.
The National Weather Service declared a flash flood emergency for Haleiwa in its latest update. The bridge over Opaeula Stream at Haleiwa Road was inundated by several feet of water, according to the Department of Emergency Management.
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“We have a great friend who last minute came,” said Pamela and John Macey. “I was surprised it came up within the steps.”
“They are one of my best friend’s parents,” said Ryan Bruner. “I knew they were kinda in an area that’s flood prone. He’s on the mainland now. So I do my best to look after friends and family.”
Listed below are short-term evacuation sites for those affected by the flooding on the North Shore:
- Waialua High and Intermediate School parking lot
67-160 Farrington Hwy, Waialua, HI 96791
- Wahiawa District Park parking lot
1129 Kilani Ave, Wahiawa, HI 96786
These evacuation sites are not shelters, just an area to gather with access to restroom facilities and parking. Pets are allowed at evacuation sites. Evacuees should try to make arrangements to stay with family and friends. City officials are accessing the need for overnight shelter at this time.
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A flash flood warning is in effect for Oahu and Kauai as heavy rains continue to drench the isle chain. All islands remains under a flash flood watch until 6 a.m. Wednesday.
On Oahu, the flash flood warning is in effect until 12:30 a.m. Wednesday.
Fire crews responded to 16 weather-related calls from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. They included 14 water evacuations, one downed tree and one downed power line.
The Honolulu Fire Department reported that a person was swept away in the Waihona Stream. First responders are actively performing a search and rescue downstream.
On Kauai, the flash flood warning is in effect until 12:45 a.m. Wednesday. NWS reported that Kuhio Highway remains closed at Hanalei Bridge. Some homes have been flooded on Alamihi Road in Wainiha, and more rain is expected to move over from the southeast side of the island.
A shelter has been opened at Hale Halawai in Hanalei due to flooding.
Below are the current road closures across the islands:
- Area of 66-802 Haleiwa Road
- Wailehua Road and Kamehameha Hwy.
- Kuhio Hwy. in the vicinity of Hanalei Bridge.
- Alamihi Road in Wainiha
- Heavy rain combined with the residual heat from the lava flow is creating steam causing limited visibility in the area of Rte. 132 and the 7-mile marker in Puna. Use extreme caution. This will remain closed through Tuesday, March 9 between the 7 Mile Marker and 4-Corners due to poor visibility.
- Ka’alaiki Road and Wood Valley Road are closed in Ka’u.
- Single-lane closure on Hwy. 19 at MP 16 (Hakalau Bridge) due to landslide.
- Hana Hwy. at MP 10 and 13 (Garden of Eden/Keanae side) is closed due to a landslide. A single lane is open at both points.
The following public schools will have modified schedules on Wednesday, March 10, due to inclement weather conditions.
- Hauula, Kaaawa and Waiahole Elementary Schools will be on full distance learning due to heavy area flooding affecting surrounding highways and roads.
- Haiku Elementary will continue full distance learning. Grab & Go lunches will be available for drive-thru pick up from 10 to 10:30 a.m. for children ages 18 and under. Parents and guardians are asked to call the school at 808-575-3000 before 8:30 a.m. on Wednesday to provide a meal count to ensure adequate preparation.
- Hana High & Elementary will resume in-person learning.