HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - The National Weather Service is warning mariners of a thunderstorm that could produce waterspouts and strong winds in the Alenuihaha Channel between Maui and the Big Island, as well as waters surrounding the two islands.
A Special Marine Warning is in effect until 10:45 p.m. for the channel, leeward and windward Big Island waters, and windward Maui waters.
Forecasters said at 8:50 p.m., Doppler radar indicated a large area of strong thunderstorms that were capable of producing winds of 34 knots of greater, along with small hail. The strongest storms were located just off the Kohala coast.
Mariners can expect gusty winds, high waves, dangerous lightning and heavy rains. Boaters were urged to seek safe harbor immediately until the storm passes.
Frequent lightning was also occurring with the storm. Boaters were told to stay below deck if possible if the storm catches in them on open water. Mariners were also warned to keep away from ungrounded metal objects due to lightning.