Tropical Storm Calvin passed to the south of the Big Island yesterday evening, bringing heavy rains and gusty winds to the state of Hawaii. While authorities assessed the damage and residents cleaned up the mess, Calvin continued to weaken well south of the rest of the island chain, becoming downgraded to a post-tropical low this morning. By tomorrow, the Central Pacific Hurricane Center expects what’s left of Calvin to completely dissipate.
While the center passed of the storm passed south of Hawaii’s Big Island, heavy rains and strong winds did batter parts of the state. The highest officially recorded wind gust was 72 mph on the island of Maui on the summit of Haleakala. Winds of 55 mph with a peak gust of 70 mph was reported by Mauna Kea Rangers on the Mauna Kea Summit on the Big Island. Residents reported trees and fences were blown down in Waikoloa Village on Hawaii Island. The heaviest rainfall recorded was also on the Big Island: the Saddle Quarry measured 6.94″ of rain over a 12 hour period while 6.82″ fell in Hakalau, 5.35″ in Waiakea Uka, 5.0″ in Glenwood, and 2.22″ fell at Hilo Airport. On Maui, 5.12″ fell on West Wailuaiki while only 0.16″ was measured at Kahului Airport. In general, flooding and wind damage was isolated and not widespread.
There were no published reports of any injuries or fatalities due to the storm.
Hawaii Governor Josh Green, M.D., praised Hawaii’s handling of the storm at a press conference today. “Thankfully, Calvin did not cause significant damage, but it’s a reminder for us to be prepared,” Governor Green said. The Governor thanked the local, state, federal and private sector partners who worked together to prepare for the storm and respond to its impacts, from the U.S. military and the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to the Hawai‘i Red Cross and its volunteers. “This provided the whole community an opportunity to practice for the next potential emergency,” Governor Green said. “As a new administration, it was gratifying for us to see how well all the parts of our state’s response system were able to work together, because that’s what it will take when a more serious storm hits.”
Calvin was the first tropical cyclone to impact Hawaii in 2023 and experts are cautioning there may be more on the way this season. In May, forecasters with NOAA unveiled their expectations for the 2023 Central Pacific Hurricane Basin season, which like the Atlantic Hurricane Season, runs from June 1 through to November 30.
NOAA’s Central Pacific Hurricane Center and NOAA’s Climate Prediction Center announced that conditions are prime for an above-normal season. Specifically, they said there’s a 50% chance of an above-normal season, a 25% chance of a near-normal season, and a 15% chance of a below-normal season. While forecasters include the expected number of tropical cyclones in the basin, they do not forecast where they will go once they form until they form.
For the 2023 season, 4 to 7 tropical cyclones are predicted for the central Pacific hurricane region, which is located north of the equator between 140°W and the International Date Line. A near-normal season has 4 or 5 tropical cyclones. Tropical cyclones include tropical depressions, tropical storms, and hurricanes.
With Calvin gone,