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Hawai‘i County Roads Experience Historic Flooding

August 27, 2018, 8:23 AM HST
* Updated August 27, 11:43 AM
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Parts of Downtown Hilo remain closed due to severe flooding, Aug. 26, 2018. PC: Crystal Richard

Hawai‘i County roadways are reopening following four days of torrential rain that from Hurricane Lane that caused severe flooding in parts of Hawai‘i Island.

Hawai‘i County Department of Public Works Director Allan Simeon said motorists are being asked to stay alert and vigilant; and to be cautious when traveling on Big Island roads.

Wailoa Center remains closed due to flooding, Aug. 26, 2018. PC : Crystal Richard

“The tropical storm event is still ongoing,” Simeon said on Sunday, Aug. 26, 2018. “Continue to be vigilant, exercise due care when traveling the roads and stay informed of current situations and developments.”

As of Sunday at 11 a.m., the following road conditions were in effect.

County Roads

  • Kaiulani Street, Reeds Island: Local Traffic Only
  • Kamehameha Avenue, Ponahawai Street to Ironworks Building: Road Closed
  • Laupahoehoe Point Road: Local Traffic Only
  • Old Māmalahoa Highway, Papaikou to Pepe‘ekeo: One Lane Open
  • Pauahi Street Bridge: Closed
  • South Point Road, Kamaoa Junction: Closed
    Waipio Valley Road: Local Traffic Only
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State DOT Roads

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State Highways reports all major roads are open; use caution on Highway 11 and 19 as each have one-lane closures and ongoing repairs.

  • Ka‘ū, Highway 11, MM 30: one lane closure with temporary traffic light.
  • North Hilo, Highway 19, Ka‘awalii Gulch: One Lane Open.

Road closures and hazards are changing so use the following link to stay up to date with this interactive map.

Simeon said there is no schedule at this time for repairs, but the county, along with partner agencies, will be assessing the damages as conditions allow. Scheduling of repair work will vary and will be based on the damages and the work to be done.

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Roads not mentioned are open and passable, however; residents are being asked to stay alert and be cautious on the roads as damage and closures can occur without notice.

To report damage to roads, contact the Civil Defense Emergency Operating Center, at (808) 935-0031.

Motorists are asked to drive with caution as many roads still have standing water and/or damage to road infrastructure. Aug. 25, 2018. PC: Crystal Richard

Rain will continue through early this week. The National Weather Service forecasts heavy rain and thunderstorms in the area of north and south Kona.

Motorists are asked to be careful when traveling on the roads and reminded that closures may occur without any notice.

For your additional information:

  • All schools will be open on Monday, Aug. 27.
  • All county parks and facilities will be open tomorrow.
  • All state parks and facilities are open, except the Wailoa Visitor’s Center.
  • All DLNR outdoor recreation areas and reserves will remain closed for further assessment.

The Hawai‘i State Department of Health is advising the public to stay out of streams, coastal and standing waters that are contaminated by storm water. Storm water may contain harmful microorganisms from overflowing cesspools or septic tanks as well as animal waste washed into streams and storm drains.

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