FL MORRIS / FMORRIS@STARBULLETIN.COM
Kona conditions brought some heavy rain showers to Honolulu yesterday afternoon. The intersection of Keeaumoku and Makaloa streets was flooded after a heavy downpour. With water over the curb, visitors prepared to cross Makaloa Street.
Swift, fierce thunderstorms descend on Oahu
Officials investigate reports of a funnel cloud in Aiea
Oahu residents might have been expecting rain yesterday, but no one seemed ready for the thunder, lightning and the deluge that drenched most of Oahu.
The thunderstorms wreaked havoc throughout the island, causing power failures, flooding homes and city streets -- and making it a tough go for Christmas shoppers on this first December weekend.
Lightning struck the roof of one person's house in Waialae Nui twice, forcing firefighters to rush to the scene to put out some flames.
In Kaneohe, one man's house was knee-deep in water after an overwhelmed storm drain at his intersection sent water pouring into his yard and kitchen.
More than 3,000 people lost power on Oahu -- 2,000 temporarily had to go without electricity in Waikiki, along with about 1,000 in Kaimuki and another 500 in Aina Haina.
And the National Weather Service was investigating whether a funnel cloud descended upon Aiea, downing several trees and blocking traffic.
The National Weather Service issued a flash flood warning minutes before 2:30 p.m., lasting until 5:30 p.m. Rain was persistent from Kaneohe to Hawaii Kai, said meteorologist Bob Burke. And a cold front was approaching the islands last night, with predictions that it would bring scattered showers and isolated thunderstorms to Oahu today.
The weather is still expected to be unsettled until tomorrow night, with some chance of showers, said forecaster Peter Donaldson. "The rainfall looks probably widespread and is going to be concentrated on the Windward side," Donaldson said. Thunder and rainy weather are expected to clear by Wednesday morning, he said.
At 3:30 p.m. yesterday, police reported four down trees, possibly caused by the thunderstorm, at the intersection of Kaonohi Street and Iho Place in Aiea. The fallen trees blocked part of the roadway, prompting police to temporarily shut down one lane until the trees were removed. There were no injuries, police said.
Weather officials also received reports of flooding, including Hobron Lane in Waikiki. A power line also went down in a resident's yard on Sierra Drive, said Capt. Kenison Tejada, spokesman with Honolulu Fire Department.
Tejada said firefighters responded to a roof fire at a home on Ahaana Way in Waialae Nui. There were no flames when firefighters arrived, but Tejada said a small area near the roof was blackened, shingles were damaged and some four-by-six rafters at the home were split.
The house also had damage to its electrical system. A resident who lives at the home told firefighters that he believed the house was struck twice by lightning.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.