Hurricane Fernanda Moves Away from Hawaii With PM-Andrew-Mobile Homes, Bjt
HONOLULU (AP) _ Hurricane Fernanda threw a scare into Hawaii residents before turning away from the island chain.
Forecasters canceled a hurricane watch for the islands Monday but warned that the storm could still change direction and threaten Hawaii. And Civil Defense officials warned of the rough surf, which destroyed one boat and damaged another in Hilo Harbor and damaged a dozen homes on the Puna coast.
″We are all very relieved,″ said Hawaii County Civil Defense Administrator Harry Kim. ″We were scared. Everyone was scared on what could have happened.″
At 5 p.m. Monday (11 p.m. EDT), the storm was 310 miles east-northeast of Hilo, on the southernmost island of Hawaii. It was moving northwest at 5 mph with sustained winds of 90 mph and gusts to 115 mph. It was expected to continue weakening and moving away from the islands, forecaster Hans Hablutzel said.
A high surf advisory remained in effect for all islands, with surf of 10 to 15 feet on some shores.
One of nine shelters remained open on the Big Island and contained about 80 Hilo-area residents still worried about the danger to their coastal homes from the waves.
Before the hurricane watch was canceled, about 200 people on Hawaii Island fled their homes, and residents of all islands stocked up on emergency supplies.
On Oahu Island, with most of the state’s residents and visitors, some roads on the coast were overrun by high waves but remained open. One beach was closed because of high surf.
Forty hikers were evacuated Monday from Wailau Valley on Molokai Island. The valley is accessible only by ocean or a difficult trail that would be impassable in a storm.
Residents of the island of Kauai, which was devastated by Hurricane Iniki Sept. 11, again stocked up on supplies. Iniki killed five people there and caused more than $1.6 billion damage.
″When you get punched in the face, the next time they raise their hand, you duck,″ Ed Vallejos said as he filled gas cans at a service station.