3 islands put on flash flood alert
Oahu, Kauai and Niihau are under a flash flood watch until this afternoon, National Weather Service forecasters said last night.
Heavy rain drenched the Garden Isle last night, forcing the temporary closure of the Kapaa bypass road and a northbound lane on Kuhio Highway near the Kauai Community Correctional Center because of flooding.
Forecasters said heavy rain and an occasional thunderstorm were possible for Oahu and Kauai through this morning.
A flash flood watch is issued when conditions are conducive to flooding. A flash flood warning is issued when a flood is occurring or imminent.
Injured man airlifted from boat
A Coast Guard helicopter crew from Barbers Point transported an injured 30-year-old man yesterday morning from a fishing vessel 70 miles north of Kauai.
The man, a crewman aboard the Isabella T, had injured his finger on a tackle block, the Coast Guard said.
The crew contacted the Coast Guard at 7:15 a.m. yesterday.
A Coast Guard flight surgeon recommended the crew tend to the man's injury while awaiting the Coast Guard helicopter. The man was taken to Wilcox Memorial Hospital on Kauai.
Mayor attends presidential forum
Mayor Mufi Hannemann will attend a forum of presidential hopefuls in Concord, N.H., this week.
Hannemann left last night on a trip to Boston with the U.S. Conference of Mayors. He will participate in a panel discussion tonight at Harvard University on climate protection and solutions proposed by city governments. In Boston, he will also meet with transit officials to discuss Honolulu's planned fixed guideway system.
Hannemann will travel to New Hampshire, where he will address the ArtsVoteNH group, which is participating in an evening forum to hear from presidential candidates about their support for the arts. The event will be at the Capitol Center for the Arts in Concord.
New Hampshire's presidential primary is Jan. 8.
"This trip is an opportunity for me to help influence national policy," said Hannemann, chairman of the U.S. Conference of Mayors' tourism, arts, parks, entertainment and sports committee.
Hannemann returns Friday, in time for Saturday's annual lighting of the Christmas tree in front of Honolulu Hale.
Kauai bridge to close for work
WAINIHA, Kauai » The one-lane Wainiha Bridge No. 3 will be closed tonight and tomorrow night, from 7 p.m. to 5 a.m., to prepare for its replacement.
Another bridge about a mile away, Wainiha Bridge No. 1, also is slated for replacement by the end of the year, but it will not be closed until later this month.
The bridges, on Kuhio Highway about five miles west from Hanalei Bridge, were damaged by an overloaded truck last month, state officials said.
When officials went to check on the bridges, they found they were in danger of collapsing.
Gov. Linda Lingle has issued an emergency proclamation for the work, which is estimated to cost between $4 million and $6 million.
The Wainiha 2 Bridge, which sits 20 feet from Wainiha 3 as part of the historic double bridge over the Wainiha River, was replaced with a temporary bridge in 2004 when it was found to be in danger of collapsing.
Copters to boost Windward noise
Windward Oahu residents may hear increased aircraft noise tonight, Marine Corps officials said.
Heavy Marine Helicopter Squadron 363 will be doing flight operations from 10:45 p.m. to 2 a.m. tomorrow, according to Marine Corps Base Hawaii.
The Honolulu Star-Bulletin invites you to nominate people who have made a difference in Hawaii during the past year.
They can be people who fought controversial battles in public or worked behind the scenes in any field -- community service, education, politics, law, labor, medicine, science, business, sports, entertainment, the arts. All that matters is that they had a devotion to their cause and made a profound impact on Hawaii.
To nominate someone, explain why you think the person should be honored. Deadline for nominations is Dec. 7.
Honorees will be selected by Star-Bulletin editors. We will publish the results starting Dec. 22.
Please include the following information: your name, your nomination, and your work and home telephone numbers.
E-mail your nominations to email@example.com, or mail them to 10 Who Made a Difference, Honolulu Star-Bulletin, 7 Waterfront Plaza, Suite 210, 500 Ala Moana Blvd., Honolulu, HI 96813.
Police, Fire, Courts
Macadamia nut warehouse burns
Big Island firefighters put out a fire that involved half a macadamia nut warehouse and garage early yesterday morning.
Hawaii County Fire Department officials said the damage to the Island Princess macadamia nut warehouse and garage was estimated at $500,000.
Fourteen firefighters responded to the fire, which was reported shortly before 3:44 a.m. yesterday at the warehouse located above Shipman Industrial Park in the Keaau District.
Fire officials said the warehouse is part of an industrial processing plant for the company, which produces nuts and candies among other products.
The fire was brought under control at about 4:41 a.m. and extinguished at 4:51 a.m., the fire department said.
Man, 20, accused of girl's sex assault
A 20-year-old Waimanalo man was charged yesterday for allegedly sexually assaulting a 16-year-old girl.
Authorities charged Alema Ikaika Lealao Mahelona with first-degree sexual assault and two counts of third-degree sexual assault.
Police said the girl reported she was sexually assaulted by an acquaintance at 7:30 p.m. Sunday at a Waimanalo recreational area.
Mahelona was being held in lieu of $60,000 bail and is scheduled to appear in court this morning.
Gunman holds up, kidnaps shopper
Police are looking for a man in his 20s who reportedly kidnapped and robbed a 33-year-old man at gunpoint in a Kunia shopping center.
Police said an unknown man approached the victim in a shopping center parking lot at 2:30 p.m. yesterday.
The suspect, who allegedly displayed a handgun, told the victim to come with him, then allegedly robbed him of his money, police said.
The suspect later released him in the Kunia area.
The case is pending further investigation.