Weather closure update: Several road closures reported and 2 shelters open
This story was updated at 9:08 p.m. on Dec. 19.
The Hawai‘i Police Department advises that Māmalahoa Highway (Route 190) near the 5-mile marker is now open in both directions. There is still water on the roadway so drive with caution.
Additionally, Kohala Mountain Road remains closed due to debris in the roadway. Highway crews are posted at the Waiaka Bridge intersection to detour Kohala-bound traffic. Use other routes to go to Kohala. The duration of the closure is not known. Highway crews continue to work to clear the roadway and will send future updates.
This story was updated at 7:51 p.m. on Dec. 19.
Hawaiʻi County officials have opened two shelters as severe weather continues to impact residents on Hawaiʻi Island. The shelters are located at the Old Airport Gymnasium parking lot in Kailua-Kona and the Waimea Community Center in North Hawaiʻi.
Shelters will remain open until further notice.
Additionally, all Hele-On routes are canceled for the day due to the current weather conditions and safety concerns regarding the public and Hele-On staff. County officials will update the public when regular service resumes.
For additional information about road closures, hazards, services, and other Hawaiʻi County impacts, residents can download the Kāhea App, available on both Apple and Andriod devices. Further, residents can visit the Hawaiʻi County Civil Defense Hazard Map at https://tinyurl.com/ykyvw3bb.
There are numerous reports of trees, debris and flooding blocking roadways. Residents are advised to remain at home until the weather passes later this evening.
Current road closures include:
• Highway 19 at mile marker 35 near Pa‘auilo.
• Palani Road vicinity 36 mile marker.
• Waikōloa Road vicinity Paniolo intersection.
• Kawaihae Road vicinity of Akulani.
• Ali‘i Drive vicinity La‘aloa Beach Park.
The Hawaii Police Department advises that Māmalahoa Highway (Route 190) near the 5-mile marker is partially obstructed with water running across the road. First Responders are on scene directing traffic.
The Hawaii Police Department advises motorists to avoid Māmalahoa Highway at the 70-mile marker from Kahuku National Park to South Point Road due to a fallen tree and downed power lines. The road is expected to be closed for several hours.
The Hawaii Police Department advises motorists to avoid Kohala Mountain Road due to debris in the roadway.
Police are posted at the Waiaka Bridge intersection to detour Kohala-bound traffic. Use other routes to go to Kohala. Police estimate the partial closure to last at least 4 hours and will update motorists when more information becomes available.
Multiple County parks and pools are closed due to the cold front battering the Big Island.
The closures include Konawaena Swimming Pool, Kona Community Aquatic Center, Honokaʻa Swimming Complex, Kawamoto Swim Stadium, Pāhoa Pool, Kamehameha Park, Hisaoka Gym, Waimea District Park, and the Hilo Municipal Golf Course.
The closures are due to lightning, fallen branches and tree limbs, or other safety hazards associated with the current weather conditions. There have been no damages to the facilities listed.
“We’re taking precautions to ensure the public’s safety through what’s predicted to be a pretty thick storm,” said Mayor Mitch Roth. “As we continue to prepare our facilities and systems for the brunt of the weather they’re seeing on Oʻahu and Maui, we’re asking our residents to make sure that they prepare their households as well. A safe community is a prepared community.”
Additional closures of County facilities may be necessary as the storm continues to move through the island, officials stated. Closures may be quick and come with little warning. County officials will continue to update the public as weather systems impact our parks, roadways, and other county systems.
For up-to-date information about the storm, residents can visit the Hawaiʻi County Hazard Map on the Civil Defense website: https://tinyurl.com/ykyvw3bb