Month: August 2014

Iselle and Julio Down by the Schoolyard

It is 5:00 pm (HST) and category 1 Hurricane Iselle is currently 150 miles east-southeast of Hilo. A hurricane warning was issued yesterday afternoon and although we had hoped that it would be downgraded to either a hurricane watch or a tropical storm warning, here we are, 2-3 hours out from experiencing sustained winds of 80 miles per hour with higher gusts. Meanwhile, Julio is 1155 miles outside of Hilo and a classified category 2 hurricane expected to weaken in the next few days. Hurricanes are rare for Hilo. We are commonly known for earthquakes, tsunamis, and volcanic eruptions, but there is a first time for everything. We did have a close call with Flossie in 2013, but she dissipated before reaching us. Living in Hilo, I had grown complacent about hurricanes being a threat. There is a common belief here that the reason we don’t experience hurricanes is because Mauna Kea, Mauna Loa, and Hualālai protect us, sheering through hurricanes and sparing us from their effects. Not so in the case of Iselle and I was jolted into reality with the issuance …