(WP) -An extremely powerful winter storm is pulling away from Hawaii after unleashing damaging winds, massive waves, coastal flooding and snow in unusual places. The storm, which the National Weather Service office in Honolulu described as “historic,” began pounding the islands Friday. Hawaii News Now reported a 66-year-old California man died in the rough surf off northwest Maui on Friday.
Forecasters “are calling this an unprecedented event and we concur that we rarely if ever have seen the combination of record high onshore waves, coupled with gale force winds,” said Sam Lemmo, administrator of Hawaii’s Department of Land and Natural Resources (DLNR). The storm’s most extreme blow was generated on the Big Island’s towering peak of Mauna Kea, where a 191-mph wind gust blasted the mountain summit at 4:40 p.m. local time Sunday. READ MORE