City leaders draw up new disaster plan

State has hurricane response plan; individual counties do not

Published  5:37 PM HST May 14, 2013
Hurricane weather
HONOLULU -

Many of us remember the devastation and destruction when Hurricane Iniki slammed into Kauai in 1992.

"Kauai took the brunt of it and Oahu only had a slight hit, but you can imagine how catastrophic it would be if all of Oahu was hit," said City Department of Emergency Management Director Melvin Kaku.

That's why the City & County of Honolulu is developing a hurricane response plan based on a catastrophic storm such as a category 4 storm.

Right now, the state has its own hurricane response plan with FEMA, but the individual counties do not.

"The essence of the whole planning effort is to identify these resources that each county will need and how we can best support each other," said Kaku.

The new disaster plan includes hurricane evacuation routes, updated shelter sites and would also look at how Oahu's ports would be affected and then the aftermath.

Not only is the Department of Emergency Management working on a hurricane response but also updating the tsunami evacuation plan.

Emergency officials will be putting up signs so people will know if they live in a tsunami inundation zone and updating maps to let people know the best way to get to a shelter.

"There is that possibility that the coastal areas that some of the roadway would be washed out and keep them isolated," said Kaku.

Images: Hurricane Survival Items
Hurricane preparedness items on table
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Hurricane preparedness items on table

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The city says both the hurricane and the tsunami evacuation plans should be complete by the end of the year.

Click here to see hurricane survival items.

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