Storms prompt flood warnings

LIHU‘E — Flash flood warnings persisted into Sunday evening as heavy showers lingered over most of the Garden Isle, forcing the closure of the Hanalei Bridge and impacting Mother’s Day events.

Rain fell at rates up to four inches per hour on the North Shore and Eastside, dumping several inches of rain in Hanalei during the 24-hour period ending at 5 p.m., according to the National Weather Service. The gauge at Mt. Wai‘ale‘ale, often referred to as the wettest spot on Earth, recorded 12.51 inches of rain during the same period.

The South Shore and Westside remained relatively dry by comparison. The Po‘ipu gauge chalked up .41 inches of rain; .83 inches fell in Kalaheo and .72 were recorded in Waimea.

The flash flood warning was initially set to expire at 9:45 a.m. Sunday, but was extended a few times throughout the day as the storms continued to pose a threat.

Some planned Mother’s Day activities were canceled due to the inclement weather, such as the running of the trams at the National Tropical Botanical Gardens in Po‘ipu.

No serious weather-related injuries had been reported by press time.

A flash flood warning means flash flooding is imminent or occurring in streams, roads and low-lying areas. The NWS advises residents to move to higher ground whenever such a warning is issued and to not cross fast-flowing or rising water in a vehicle or on foot.

A flash flood watch is in effect for Kaua‘i, as well as other parts of the state, through 6 p.m. today.

The Hanalei Bridge remained closed at press time. Visit www.thegardenisland.com for updates.

See the FYI page on A2 for a complete weather forecast.

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