Hurricane Lane set to go down in Hawaii’s record books

Tropical Storm Lane will go down in Hawaii’s history as one that made it into several top five categories in terms of strength and amount of rainfall.

Lane formed as a tropical storm in the eastern Pacific on August 15 and became a hurricane the following day.

At one point it reached category 5 status, making it one of the few to ever reach this strength this close to Hawaii.

It is now beginning to pull away from Hawaii as a tropical storm.

Lane is the strongest hurricane to track within 482km of Hawaii, according to NOAA’s historical database. On Tuesday, August 21, Hurricane Lane strengthened to a category 5 hurricane, the first since Loke in 2006. 

Lane has also been the most intense North Pacific hurricane, east of the International Date Line, since Patricia in 2015

But the strength of the storm is just part of its impressive characteristics. There is also the amount of rain that Hawaii’s Big Island has received.

The greatest amount recorded was Mountain View, located in the higher elevations of the Big Island, receiving 1,192mm since Wednesday.

Waiakea Uka, located just south of Hilo on the Big Island, has picked up 1,177mm since Wednesday, while Piihonua picked up 1,135mm of rainfall through Saturday morning.

The Big Island rainfall totals are putting Lane in the top four rainfall records of rainiest US tropical cyclones on record with Amelia in 1978 receiving 1,219mm, Hiki in 1950 with 1,320mm, and Harvey in 2017 producing a staggering 1,538mm of rain for Texas.

Hilo also broke a three-day record, picking up 809mm of rain from Wednesday to Friday, making it the wettest three-day period ever observed in Hilo since records began in 1949.

The heavy rain has been responsible for road flooding on the Big Island, including the town of Hilo, and mudslides and landslides have occurred, blocking numerous roads.

As Lane now continues to head to the west and then northwest, bands of heavy rain will continue to drench the Hawaiian islands through at least Sunday, and potentially into Monday.

SOURCE: Al Jazeera and news agencies

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