Pacific Disaster Center Fostering Disaster Resilient Communities  

Providing Weather and Hazard Related News

Weather Wall




Hawaii Weather Overview


Northeast winds will increase near Kauai and Oahu today, while lighter trade winds will prevail over Maui county and the Big Island. Passing showers will focus over windward and mauka areas statewide, but will be more frequent over Kauai and Oahu through tonight, as a weak front stalls and dissipates nearby. Light to moderate trade winds on Friday will turn to the southeast over the weekend, as another front approaches the islands.

A High Surf Advisory is in effect until 6 am HST Friday for north and west facing shores of Kauai, Niihau and Oahu and for north facing shores of Molokai and Maui.

A Small Craft Advisory is in effect until 6 pm HST Friday for Kauai northwest waters, Kauai windward waters, Kauai leeward waters, Kauai channel, Oahu windward waters, Oahu leeward waters, Kaiwi Channel, Maui county windward waters.


PDC Global Hazards Atlas centered on the central Pacific Ocean near Hawaii is displaying 3 hour precipitation accumulations over the last three hours.


Hawaiian Weather Synopsis: 

Based on the NWS Area Forecast Discussion for Hawaii, issued 01 Dec 2011 at 1000am HST  

High clouds over the western islands are helping to obscure lower clouds over these islands, particularly over Kauai. Radar and rain gage reports indicate showers continuing to fall over the garden isle. The short term forecast philosophy remains the same. A surface trough to the east of the islands has low level convergence associated with it that is triggering thunderstorms to the northeast of Maui and the Big Island. This trough is expected to lift northward and weaken over the next 36 hours.

The wet weather over Kauai and near Oahu is due to a combination of trade wind flow from a surface high, and a weak shearline moving over the islands. We are expecting the shearline to remain nearly stationary over the next 24 hours or so, and to dissipate on Friday. As the shearline near Kauai and the surface trough to the northeast dissipate, we can expect a return to east northeast trade winds across the state with showers over mostly windward and mauka areas. The next shift in the weather will come on Saturday as winds turn more out of the southeast. This is due to the ridge north of the islands sinking southward ahead of the next front.

High surf advisory remains in effect for exposed N and W shores. The building swell will combine with moderate to fresh NE winds to drive seas above 10 feet around Kauai, Oahu and Maui. A small craft advisory is in effect for those areas. With combined seas of 10 feet or more spreading to additional marine zones, the small craft advisory may be expanded further. Seas are expected to diminish below advisory values on Saturday.

Click on the following link for the latest National Weather Service advisories and warnings:Wind/Surf/Flood related advisories or warnings

Details of Hawaii’s Weather – Wind/Precipitation/Surf

The following numbers represent the strongest wind gusts (mph), along with directions early Thursday morning:

29                 Barking Sands, Kauai – NNE
16                 Wheeler AFB and Waianae, Oahu – NNW
08                 Molokai – NNW
00                 Kahoolawe
06                 Lip0a, Maui – ENE
09                 Lanai – ENE
18                 South Point, Big Island – ENE

Here are the 24-hour precipitation totals (inches) for each of the islands as of late Thursday morning:

3.80              Kilohana, Kauai
0.41               Oahu Forest NWR, Oahu
0.00              Molokai
0.00              Lanai
0.02              Kahoolawe
0.24               Kahakuloa, Maui
0.07              Honokaa, Big Island

Here is the latest NWS rainfall forecast

Here are the latest available satellite images:

Hawaii Infrared satellite image
Animated Satellite image of Hawaii region
Latest satellite image – Close-in visible satellite view
Latest radar image – Looping

900 AM HST THU DEC 01, 2011

Outlook through Wednesday Dec 07:  High Surf Advisory is in effect for North and West facing shores through 6 am Friday. Large north-northwest swell peak today then drop through the weekend. Southern hemisphere swell will produce chest to head high surf along exposed beaches and reefs Friday into the weekend. Trade swell will decline along windward shores as trades ease and become southeasterly this weekend.

North shores –  Surf along north facing shores will be 15 to 20 feet today then drop to 10 to 14 feet Friday.

West shores –  Surf along west facing shores will be 10 to 15 feet today then drop to 6 to 10 feet Friday.

South shores–  Surf along south facing shores will be flat to 2 feet today then build to 2 to 4 feet Friday.

East shores –  Surf along east facing shores will remain 4 to 6 feet today then drop to 2 to 4 feet Friday.

NOAA animated wave model