Strong winds knock out power; about 2,500 Kauai customers without electricity over weekend, Monday

OMAO — Over the weekend, high winds blew a tree over Troy Kaneshiro’s driveway in Omao. The tree also knocked over an electric pole and street light, causing a power outage in the area.

Kaneshiro was among 2,500 customers whose homes and businesses were affected by strong winds over the weekend, according to officials with Kauai Island Utility Cooperative.

“We had numerous weather-related outages over the weekend spanning from Hanalei to Kokee,” said Beth Tokioka, spokeswoman for KIUC. “Most of them were relatively small and due to high winds and/or trees that were downed onto lines.”

On Monday, about 800 KIUC customers in Eleele and Kalaheo were affected with power outages resulting from the weather.

Most of the outages were resolved within two or three hours of being reported, Tokioka said. The largest impact was in the Wailua Homesteads area on Saturday morning.

“A little over 1,000 members were impacted — some only briefly, some for several hours,” Tokioka said.

Since noon on Saturday, the Lihue Airport recorded winds as high as 47 mph, according to the National Weather Service. A wind warning and advisory was issued to most of area of the state on Saturday and Sunday. The advisory was lifted Sunday evening.

The winds were result of a cold front moving from the northwest with high pressure.

According to officials with the National Weather Service, Kauai generally saw lighter gusts than the other islands. On most parts of Kauai, gusts fell below 40 mph.

On Saturday, the six Kauai weather stations averaged winds of about 32 mph — with Puu Lua in Kokee registering winds as high as 39 mph.

In Hawaii County, winds as strong as 84 mph were recorded on Kohala Ranch on the north-end of the island.

On Oahu, high winds caused more than 100 separate outages that were reported on Saturday and Sunday, affecting about 100,000 customers, according to Hawaiian Electric Companies.

On Monday, the entire island of Lanai —1,700 customers — were without power after 19 utility poles were damaged by winds.

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