Water Quality Buoy Redeployed in Hilo Bay

July 31, 2019, 12:00 PM HST (Updated July 31, 2019, 12:00 PM)
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Successfully redeployed water quality buoy off Hilo, Hawaiʻi. PC: S. Colbert

The PacIOOS water quality buoy at Hilo Bay, Hawaiʻi, was redeployed in July after it was lost during Hurricane Lane in August 2018.

Hurricane Lane brought significant amounts of rainfall to Hawaiʻi Island, increasing stream flows that entered coastal waters. At Rainbow Falls, which are located downstream of the Wailuku River stream gauge, the base flow rose from a typical 35 cubic feet per second (cfs) to 26,000 cfs and a record-breaking maximum flow of 82,300 cfs (source: U.S. Geological Survey).

Along with large amounts of freshwater, significant amounts of debris entered Hilo Bay. It is believed that large debris pieces, such as tree logs, might have caused the water quality buoy to break free from its mooring.

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