Hurricane Lane Forecast to Turn Toward Hawaii with Swell, Wind, Weather Impacts

Hurricane Lane Forecast to Turn Toward Hawaii with Swell, Wind, Weather Impacts

Hurricane Lane Forecast to Turn Toward Hawaii with Swell, Wind, Weather Impacts

Hawaii is bracing for a rare event this week, as major Hurricane Lane tracks toward the state - the first hurricane to make such a close approach to the chain since 2014. The current forecast track has the storm making a turn to the northwest sometime Wednesday into Thursday, with the center expected to pass close to the islands of Hawaii and Maui starting on Thursday.

As per the latest models, the centre of Lane will move very close to or over the main Hawaiian Islands from Thursday through Saturday, the National Weather Service's Central Pacific Hurricane Centre in Honolulu said.

Lane has maximum winds of 150 mph (240 km/h) and is about 450 miles (725 km) southeast of Hawaii's big island.

Still, "Lane is forecast to remain a unsafe hurricane as it draws closer to the Hawaiian islands", the CPHC said.

Beyond its wind strength, the storm was also expected to be a rainmaker through the weekend, bringing the risk of flooding and landslides. "If the storm were to make a significant impact on the island of Oahu, in particular, it could cause flooding at Honolulu International Airport, the oil refinery at Barbers Point, and several large military installations, including Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam", it noted.

Unfortunately NOAA's "hurricane hunter" aircraft that flies through the center of the storm had to be grounded Tuesday morning, as it needed to be examined after "encountering strong turbulence last night" when flying through Lane, according to NOAA.

The above map shows the tracks of storms that have reached Category 4 or 5 at some point in their lifespan, since 1950 - not including Hurricane Lane.

"As Lane moves up from the southeast, the earliest potential threat to land will be for the Big Island, where a Hurricane Warning is now in effect".

"Preparations to protect life and property should be rushed to completion", the NHC said. I've not seen such dramatic changes in the forecast track as I've seen with this storm.

The Hurricane Center urged residents of Hawaii to prepare for the storm.

While the storm has gained strength over the past day and is only 7 mph shy of Category 5 strength, the Hurricane Center predicts it to begin slowly weakening over the next 24 hours due to increasing wind shear, which would disrupt thunderstorm development.

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