JAMM AQUINO / JAQUINO@STARBULLETIN.COM
Dustin Enos, 14, unloaded a tray of water as he helped dry out the Silva Store on Ewa Beach Road, which was submerged in floodwaters yesterday morning.
Rain adds to isles’ grief
» Water and mud flood 19 houses on Oahu
» Rushing water closes several roadways; flood-ravaged Kauai is spared further harm
Thundershowers settled over Oahu and the Big Island yesterday, sending floodwaters into at least 19 homes and turning roads into muddy rivers.
Wilson Tunnel Closure
Town-bound lanes of Likelike Highway's Wilson Tunnel will be closed from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. today so crews can clear debris from a landslide last week.
The state Department of Transportation advises drivers to allow for extra travel time when using alternate routes.
In Kaneohe, heavy rains and debris clogged a privately owned culvert above Namoku Street, knocking down a retaining wall and spilling rushing waters into nearby yards and homes.
Elsewhere on Oahu, firefighters helped remove water, mud and debris from flooded homes, including nine in Windward Oahu, six in Ewa, two in Aiea and one each in Kalihi and Salt Lake, according to Honolulu Fire Department spokesman Capt. Sigmund Oka.
Runoff onto roads caused temporary closures in Windward Oahu, including along Kamehameha Highway. About 9:30 a.m. yesterday, water as high as a foot deep was reported along the roadway between Kaneohe and Punaluu. The highway was closed temporarily near the Waikane Bridge, and from Waimea Bay to Sunset Beach Elementary School.
Oahu Civil Defense and the American Red Cross temporarily opened shelters in Kailua and Laie. One Kaneohe woman whose Pahia Road home was flooded in the rain evacuated but returned when the rains let up.
Also, Hawaiian Electric Co. crews say lightning likely knocked out power to about 60 customers in Kailua, Ewa and Wahiawa yesterday.
From Kahuku and Hauula came reports of two damaged HECO poles, which were leaning over Kamehameha Highway.
On the Big Island, a small landslide occurred on Highway 11 in Kau near Naalehu, prompting officials to shut down the roadway. Other road closures were reported in Pohaku and Puna.
JAMM AQUINO / JAQUINO@STARBULLETIN.COM
Friends and neighbors of the Tokuyama family worked diligently yesterday morning to divert floodwater and mud that inundated their residence on Namoku Street in Kaneohe. Heavy rains pounded much of Oahu late Saturday and yesterday morning.
The National Weather Service issued a flash flood watch yesterday for all islands through tonight. Earlier in the day, flash flood warnings had been posted for Oahu and the Big Island.
From 5 a.m. to 5 p.m. yesterday, Punaluu got 5 inches of rain while Kaneohe and Ahuimanu received more than 4 inches.
Over the same 12 hours, Hilo Airport got 6.28 inches of rain, and Kapapala Ranch was soaked with nearly 6 inches.
Mountain View, Pahoa and Pahala each saw well over 4 inches, the National Weather Service said.
Meanwhile, Kauai was mostly spared from the heavy rain, giving searchers some relief as they continued looking for three men and a boy swept away Tuesday in Ka Loko Dam floodwaters.
The bodies of two women and a man have been found among the debris. A team of 10 National Guard members joined the search yesterday, relieving some searchers who had been working long hours in almost constant rain, state Civil Defense Vice Director Ed Teixeira said.
The break in rain also allowed swollen waterways to subside somewhat, and water level heights at Waita Reservoir in Koloa to further decrease.
BARRY MARKOWITZ / SPECIAL TO THE STAR-BULLETIN
Waterfalls spilled onto Kamehameha Highway yesterday at the north end of Kahana Bay, Windward Oahu. Water as high as a foot deep was reported along the roadway between Kaneohe and Punaluu.
There were fears the Waita Dam could give way last week, when reservoir waters were up to more than 22 feet. But the reservoir was down by a foot yesterday, and just two inches of water was flowing over its spillway, according to a news release from owner Grove Farm.
The Namoku Street culvert break on Oahu happened at about 8:30 a.m. when a chunk of its retaining wall -- estimated at 12 feet long and 3 feet wide -- fell into Cal Carias' back yard.
Carias, of 45-142 Namoku St., said he was at work when his girlfriend called him about the incident.
The fast-moving floodwaters from the culvert flattened banana trees in his back yard. His mo-ped was pushed nearly 50 feet into a chain-link fence. "I was shocked," said Carias' girlfriend, Charisse Gines. Carias said Carias' father cleared debris from the culvert just a few days ago.
Tracie Camanga, who lives at 45-134 Namoku St., said her computer and sofa were damaged by water that crept through her computer room.
"It was coming like a waterfall down here," she said.
Thomas Kajihiro, who lives next to Carias, said he was reading the newspaper yesterday when he heard rushing sounds of water next to his home.
When he looked out his window, he saw about 2 1/2 feet of water flowing against the side of his son's home next door.
Water flowed into the home through the jalousies.
City spokesman Mark Matsunaga said the culvert on Namoku Street is supposed to be maintained by whoever owns it.
RICHARD WALKER / RWALKER@STARBULLETIN.COM
Water continued to drain yesterday from Ka Loko Reservoir in Kilauea, Kauai, after a deadly dam breach last week. A team of 10 Hawaii National Guard soldiers joined the search yesterday for three men and a boy still missing from Tuesday's pre-dawn disaster.
Star-Bulletin writer Crystal Kua contributed to this report.