With a dark and brooding sky on the horizon, Ed Fukuchi cast for papio yesterday at Ala Moana Beach. He had bagged one 7-incher.

Heavy rains wreak
havoc throughout
the islands

Thunderstorms that caused several road closures and power failures across the state yesterday and late Thursday are expected to persist through the weekend, concentrated on the Big Island and Maui, according to the National Weather Service.

A flash flood watch for all Hawaiian islands was in effect until this morning and was expected to be extended today.

"The air mass is unstable," said National Weather Service forecaster Norman Hui. "The sky will be cloudy ... and we can see a chance of thunderstorms on any island."

Heavy rains on the Big Island caused flooding in some areas yesterday and forced police to close five roads for hours.

The American Red Cross of Hawaii opened three shelters last night for Big Island residents.

As many as 80 people were estimated to be using two shelters last night: the Waimea and Pahala community centers. A third shelter, at the Hisaoka Gym in North Kohala, would remain open only if needed.

Eighty residents of the Kawaihae Transitional Housing facility near Waimea also were displaced when a nearby stream overflowed, flooding their apartments.

Roads cut by floodwaters and closed yesterday were Queen Kaahumanu Highway near Mauna Lani Drive, Hawaii Belt Road between Pahala and Naalehu, Kawaihae Road halfway between Kawaihae and Waimea, and the Kohala Mountain Road in the area near Waimea. They were all reopened by about 8 p.m. Eight inches of rain fell on Kapapala Ranch, and 5 inches dropped on Mountain View over the 24-hour period ending at 5:45 p.m.

The rain prompted the city to cancel today's Sunset on the Beach, the event's third cancellation since late last month. An anti-"ice" rally scheduled for noon yesterday at the state Capitol was also postponed.

On Maui, Honoapiilani Highway was closed for hours early yesterday morning because of landslides between Maalae and mile marker 11.

Star-Bulletin reporter Rod Thompson contributed to this report.


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