Hawaiʻi County closes 2 parks, cancels some bus routes because of heavy rainfall and flooding
Inclement weather because of the Kona Low passing over the Big Island has prompted some park closures, bus route disruptions and other actions by Hawaiʻi County officials to keep the public safe.
William Billy Kenoi Park in Pāhoa and the Panaʻewa Covered Playcourt in Hilo are closed because of flooding or excessive rainfall.
Some Hele-On bus routes have been canceled because of hazardous road conditions as a result of the weather. The public can keep up with route changes and services by following Hele-On on X, formerly known as Twitter, @heleonbus.
Waipiʻo Valley Access Road, which was closed earlier this week in anticipation of the storm, will remain closed to the general public as a precautionary safety measure. The road will remain open to valley residents and farmers unless otherwise directed.
Six potential shelter sites islandwide are prepared to be open should the need arise.
Eastern, southern and southeastern portions of the island are now under a flash flood warning until 1:15 p.m. A flood warning is issued when a flash flood is imminent or occurring.
The Hawaiʻi County Emergency Operation Center will remain in partial activation throughout the day.
As of this morning, Hilo, Hāmākua and Kaʻū have seen rainfall of between 2 and 3 inches, with areas of Puna seeing nearly 5 inches.
Shower coverage is expected to gradually diminish during the weekend; however, the potential for some locally heavy showers could persist as the Kona Low lingers.
County officials encourage the public to take the following preventive measures:
- Monitor official weather updates from the National Weather Service and local authorities.
- Prepare an emergency kit with essential supplies including food, water, medications, flashlights, batteries and important documents.
- Establish a communication plan with family members and loved ones in case of evacuation or separation.
- Secure outdoor furniture and loose objects and ensure gutters are clear to prevent flooding.
- Familiarize yourself with evacuation routes and shelters in your area.