Flash-flood watch issued for island as surf continues to pound east shores

Maui residents, especially those in low-lying areas, should monitor weather forecasts

Visitors to the Iao Valley Monument walk down a pathway on Sunday afternoon. The park reopened last week after being closed for repairs and slope stabilization following massive damage from heavy rains in September 2016. There’s a flash-flood watch in effect for Maui island. Weather forecasters caution that deep tropical moisture combined with decreased stability in the atmosphere could produce heavy rainfall and flash flooding. The Maui News / BRIAN PERRY photo

The Maui News

The National Weather Service has posted a flash-flood watch for Maui island.

The advisory was to go into effect today and continue until Tuesday afternoon.

Deep tropical moisture combined with decreased stability could produce heavy rainfall and flash flooding, the agency reported.

Residents, especially those in low-lying areas, should monitor weather forecasts and be prepared to take action if flash-flood warnings are issued, the federal agency said. Hikers and campers should consider rescheduling their plans until weather conditions are more favorable.

For the 24-hour period ending at 11 a.m. Sunday, the rain gauge at Puu Kukui in the West Maui Mountains reported 8.62 inches, the West Wailuaiki gauge in East Maui showed 5.14 inches and the Puu Alii gauge on Molokai recorded 3.64 inches. The only other Maui County rain gauge to show more than an inch was Hana – 1.06.

Meanwhile, a high-surf advisory continued for the east-facing shores of Maui and Molokai until 6 p.m. today.

Beachgoers can expect surf of 6 to 10 feet, increasing to 8 to 12 feet through today. Strong currents and shore breaks will make swimming difficult and dangerous.

And, a wind advisory was in effect through 6 p.m. Sunday. Forecasters predicted northeast winds blowing from 20 to 35 mph, with gusts in some areas of more than 50 mph.

Strong winds can knock down tree branches and make driving difficult, especially for motorists driving high-profile vehicles.

At Kahului Airport just before noon Sunday, sustained winds were clocked at 20 mph, and there were gusts of 30 mph. Humidity at the airport ranged from 84 percent before 1 a.m. to 64 percent at nearly 11 a.m.

Forecasters predict mostly cloudy skies and windy conditions for windward and mauka areas with occasional showers during the day and showers likely at night. Leeward areas can expect scattered showers, with heavy rainfall possible in some areas.

High temperatures will range from 79 to 84 degrees, with overnight lows of 69 to 74. Winds should blow out of the east from 15 to 25 mph. Cloudy and breezy conditions were forecast to continue into Wednesday and Thursday.

For around-the-clock, pre-recorded weather advisories, call the Maui County Automated Information System at 986-1200. The same information is available at mauicounty.gov.