East Hawaii News

Cold Front Breaks Record in Hilo, to Return Wednesday

November 12, 2013, 9:34 AM HST
* Updated November 12, 6:16 PM
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Yes, it was rather cool on the windward side of the Big Island Monday, as the temperature in Hilo never rose above 74 degrees the entire day, the National Weather Service said.

That was cool enough to obliterate the record for the lowest maximum temperature for the date. The previous low maximum temperature for Nov. 11 was 77 degrees, set in 1955 and tied in 1994 and 2001.

The coolest day ever recorded in the month of November in Hilo was 72 degrees, set on two different occasions, on Nov. 9, 1964 and Nov. 19, 1965.

Weather service forecaster Tom Birchard said the cool weather was the product of a lack of sunshine combined with the effects of a cool air mass that moved southward over the state in the wake of a cold front.

That front or shear line also brought the weekend deluges on the Big Island’s windward side that included double-digit rainfall in the Ookala area on the Hamakua Coast.

The rain gauge at Big Island Dairy recorded 10.93 inches in the three-day period beginning at 8 a.m. Saturday.

Birchard said although the windward side of the Big Island will see some showers today from the edges of the shear line sitting off the windward side, that system is expected to be making a full-on return visit beginning late Wednesday, drawn back by a low-pressure trough over the state.

“It’s going to make its way back west over the island chain over the next several days,” he said.

The atmospheric instability was already causing some heavy showers over sections of Kona this morning.

The combination of the trough and the returning moisture prompted the weather service to issue a flash-flood watch for the Big Island and Maui from late tonight through Thursday afternoon.

Also, a high-surf warning remained in effect for the north- and east-facing shores of all islands.

For a third straight day, Hawaii County Civil Defense closed off Hilo’s Bayfront Highway because of waves and debris on the roadway.

Birchard said the return of showers to the windward side of the Big Island and Maui Wednesday night into Thursday will likely be accompanied by winds and wintry weather on the high mountain summits.

He said since the system this time around will be coming from the southeast instead of the north, temperatures should be a bit warmer.

That weather is expected to give way to tradewinds on the weekend, with clouds and scattered showers in the forecast for Friday and Saturday on windward sides, with the showers making it over to leeward sections by the afternoon and evening.

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