As Hurricane Lane churns a path through the Pacific, residents of Hawaii are bracing for the storm’s impacts, including heavy rains, high-speed winds and mudslides.
These risks apply even if the hurricane doesn’t make landfall but maintains its track to the south of the islands.
As a result, Hawaii’s Governor David Ige signed an emergency proclamation and schools on the Big Island and in Maui County have closed.
The hurricane was classified as Category 4 storm on Wednesday, with winds of 155 miles per hour or more. Rains are expected as early as Wednesday night, and the storm is expected to draw close to the islands Thursday through Saturday.
To inform and coordinate potential response efforts, Direct Relief has been in communication with healthcare facilities on the islands, as well agencies at the federal, state and local levels, including Hawaii Primary Care Association, the National Association of Community Health Centers and the Federal Emergency Management Agency.
Direct Relief has also extended offers of hurricane-specific medicine and supplies and is mobilizing emergency shipments to deploy in the event that assistance is needed.
— Ricky Arnold (@astro_ricky) August 22, 2018
Direct Relief has a robust network of health centers throughout the Hawaiian Islands. Most recently, Direct Relief worked with health centers on Hawaii’s Big Island that provided care to patients who evacuated the Kilauea volcanic eruptions.
Hurricane response is central to Direct Relief’s emergency efforts in the United States, and date back to the organization’s response to Hurricane Katrina in 2004.
At the start of each hurricane season, Direct Relief prepositions medicines and supplies in hurricane prone-areas. The organization also keeps a stock of emergency medical supplies on hand to deploy to high-risk areas like Hawaii if needed.
5am: #Lane is a category 4 storm this morning as it continues WNW toward the state. Maui County has been upgraded to a Hurricane Warning, and a Hurricane Watch has been issued for Kauai County. Visit https://t.co/fUefWa9aTA for a full list of current watches and warnings #hiwx pic.twitter.com/dTBe4b8TUt
— NWSHonolulu (@NWSHonolulu) August 22, 2018
Direct Relief is continuing to monitor Hurricane Lane’s impacts and will continue to provide updates as more information becomes available.