Wet season a dry one for Maui County, Leeward Big Island

Published: May. 22, 2012 at 12:13 AM HST|Updated: Aug. 22, 2012 at 7:33 PM HST
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HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - Rainfall during Hawaii's wet season was definitely wet for the western part of the state, but most areas of Maui, Molokai, Lanai and the Big Island of Hawaii had below normal rainfall, according to the National Weather Service.

The wet season generally runs from October through April in Hawaii. According to the weather service's Honolulu office, this is the 18th-wettest season during the past 30 years.

On Kauai, most sites recorded more than 100 percent of normal rainfall for the season. Lihue Airport recorded 30.05 inches during the period, making it the fifth wettest season in the past 30 years.

Most windward sites on Oahu recorded 70 to 100 percent of normal rainfall, while most leeward sties recorded only 30 to 60 percent. Honolulu Airport had 9.67 inches of rain, the 18th wettest season.

Maui County was high and dry, with most areas getting only 20 to 50 percent of normal rainfall. Ulupalakua Ranch in leeward Haleakala had just 6.64 inches of rain, which was the driest October through April figure since the wet season of 1972-1973, meteorologists said. Molokai Airport received 6.90 inches of rain, the 29th driest season of the past 30 years.

On the Big Island, most windward sites received 80 to 110 percent of normal rainfall, but parched leeward areas got less than half the normal amount of rain. Hilo Airport recorded 79.65 inches, for the 14th-wettest season.

Forecasters say the dry season from May through September of this year could see persistent drought in leeward Maui County and the Big Island, with the possibility that the drought conditions could get worse.  Kauai and Oahu will likely experience seasonal dryness in leeward areas.

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