50-foot waves spare North Shore properties

50-foot waves spare North Shore properties

NORTH SHORE, OAHU (HawaiiNewsNow) - Just a couple of days ago Rupert Oberlohr said the ocean or the ex-wife would take his house. So what is he saying today?

"We won the battle with the ocean so now the ex-wife can still get the house," laughed Rupert Oberlohr, Rocky Point homeowner.

He has owned his oceanfront home for 38 years and still plans to retire there, although it has given him some sleepless nights.

"I don't mind staying awake at night but for different reasons. When you are laying in bed and thinking what really can happen if the 50 foot wave comes and knocks on your door, it's not nice," said Oberlohr.

Next door, his neighbors were also spared from catastrophe escaping without anymore significant damage.

"It's really unchanged thank God," said Alice Lunt, Rocky Point homeowner.

The Dombrowski's who also live on Ke Nui Road did lose a portion of their house in another high swell at Christmas and with it an estimated half the properties value. Still that's better than all of it.

Now homeowners are hoping for a long-term solution.

"We need to come up with a long term plan obviously and not just a reactionary plan," said Lunt.

"We deal with this on a regular basis," said Kim Franks, renter.

Kim Franks is spending the winter in Rocky Point and says erosion is a regular issue on the Outer Banks of North Carolina where she is from.

"We're losing so much coastline there is nothing to build on so it's just going back and back and the older houses are the ones that are going," said Franks.

That is the fear here on Oahu's North Shore too. But for now Oberlohr is happy he can still make jokes.

"All four of my ex-wives were good housekeepers. Every time I got divorced they kept the house. Except this one!" laughed Oberlohr.

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