Battered Waimanalo residents brace for more strong winds - Hawaii News Now - KGMB and KHNL

Battered Waimanalo residents brace for more strong winds

Kurt Hookano Kurt Hookano
Rhoda Kealoha Rhoda Kealoha

By Minna Sugimoto - bio | email

WAIMANALO (KHNL) - Although not as strong as predicted, the winds did do some damage in Windward Oahu.

Waimanalo residents know all too well the destructive power of Mother Nature. Many are still recovering from last month's harsh weather.

Rhoda Kealoha puts a cooler, a bucket and a pot in strategic locations to catch the water coming through her kitchen ceiling.

"I'm looking for where it's falling," she said while choking back tears. "And you put it here and it falls somewhere else. You put it there and it falls somewhere else."

Last month, strong winds tore up the roof on her Poliala Street home. The temporary repairs were no match for this latest round of gusts.

"I was...I'm tired, you know," Kealoha said through tears. "It's just, it takes a lot out of you and the worry that it'll all come down."

When the National Weather Service issued its high wind warning this week, residents in the area got ready, buying ropes and other supplies to anchor their roofs.

For Sam Ho, last month's destruction is still fresh in his mind.

"My roof flew off," he recalled. "The eave flew over the roof. The roofing paper flew off. My wall cracked on the bottom. The picture window blew out."

His neighbor isn't taking any chances, securing his ropes with weights. Sometimes, you need muscle in the battle against Mother Nature.

"Rain, I don't mind," Ho said. "Wind is the danger, yeah."

Watching his neighbors, Kurt Hookano decided to tie his roof down for the first time.

"When I heard had high wind warnings, I decided to go down Home Depot just in case our house fly away," he said.

After all his hard work, and the wind warning dropped, he says he doesn't believe civil defense and other authorities over-reacted.

"I think that's a safety precaution 'cause if had any kind of hazard and what not, people off the road," Hookano said. "Guys can get to the things easy."

Kealoha, a low-income resident, says she can't afford to fix her roof, so she's hoping the Federal Emergency Management Agency or Habitat for Humanity will assist her.

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