Hurricane Iniki

Category 4 hurricane that caused major damage and took six lives on Kauai in 1992.

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• General: Educational • General: History

Matt Anderson's Take
Hurricane Iniki was a Category 4 hurricane that struck the island of Kauai on September 11, 1992. Iniki hit peak speeds over 140 MPH and ended up destroying over 1,400 homes, killing six people, and damaging over 5,000 properties. Total cost of damages was around $1.8 billion (which is more like $3 billion in 2016 dollars).


The hurricane brought massive waves up to 35 feet in height and some areas recorded a high water mark of almost 18 feet on land. Debris lines were recorded over 800 feet inland in some areas. Most of the other islands were untouched, though parts of Oahu did experience some damage from high winds and storm surge.


One of the more famous hotels that was damaged would be the Coco Palms Resort. This resort was completely destroyed by the hurricane and never reopened. Although plans have been in the works to bring this hotel back ever since, it's only recently (2016) that actual demolition of the old resort and construction of it's replacement began.


Most of the time Hawaii Weather is generally tame, peaceful, and basically perfect. But as Hurricane Iniki has showed, there are some potential pitfalls to living in paradise. See Hawaii Living: Weather and please make sure to read more on Emergency Preparedness if you live in Hawaii and always be ready to take action.


Although it's hard to be prepared for complete devastation of your home, hurricanes do give us warning so it's important to listen to those warnings and evacuate when asked to do so. The last thing you want is to be in the path of a hurricane when it's too late to leave due to high winds, flying debris, or a Flash Flood.
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