Hurricane season begins in the Central Pacific

June 1 marks the beginning of the Central Pacific hurricane season, which runs until November 30. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s (NOAA) Central Pacific Hurricane Center is predicting an above-normal hurricane season in the region for 2019, due to above-average ocean temperatures and a continuing El Niño, which decreases wind shear and allows for stronger cyclones.

A total of 5 to 8 tropical cyclones (tropical depressions, named storms, and hurricanes) are predicted for the Central Pacific hurricane basin; a typical season is 4 to 6 tropical cyclones. It is not known how many will hit or come close to the state. A hurricane or other tropical storm can bring devastating winds and torrential rain even if it does not directly strike the islands.

More information can be found at the NOAA press release.

Because we do not know what is in store this season, the Office of Public Health Preparedness encourages all state residents to make sure they and their family are prepared for hurricanes and other emergencies.

Because of the state’s isolation, Hawaii residents are vulnerable to shortages if infrastructure is damaged by a hurricane, earthquake, tsunami, or other disaster. That’s why all Hawaii residents are recommended to have an emergency kit with enough water, food, medicine, and other essentials that will last AT LEAST TWO WEEKS.

Hawaii residents are also urged to learn what to do before, during, and after a hurricane or other emergency. For more information on emergency kits, hurricane season, and disaster preparedness, visit these web pages: