Douglas Brings Hurricane Warning
By Catherine Cluett Pactol
The first hurricane of the season, Douglas, brought storm conditions and closures to Molokai as it passed just slightly north of the islands last Sunday.
Hurricane prep for many residents was in full swing over the weekend and by Saturday evening, Rawlins Texaco reported they had sold out of Plus grade gas as well as propane. Long lines for gas and grocery stores extended Saturday evening and into Sunday morning for gas stations.
Young Brothers cancelled their Sunday barge so the next barge this week will be Thursday. Misaki’s closed Sunday rather than holding regular store hours.
Kalaupapa settlement was asked to evacuate, but patient residents decided they wanted to stay, so caregivers also had to remain in the settlement.
Mayor Michael Victorino asked residents to shelter in place at their home or with family or friends. An emergency shelter at Molokai High School, operated by the Red Cross, opened at 7 a.m. on Sunday. Victorino stressed the shelter was only for those who had no other option to shelter in place. Masks and health and temperature screenings were required for entry.
At 5 a.m. Sunday, a hurricane warning was issued for Maui County, with Douglas expected to remain a hurricane as it passed through the islands.
As of Sunday morning, heavy rains, flooding, storm surge and winds up to 40 miles per hour were expected for Molokai, with the worst conditions around 2 p.m. as Douglas passed just to the north of the island. In the later afternoon, wind direction was expected to shift to the south, bringing Kona winds as the storm headed toward Kauai.