While forecasters aren’t ruling anything out yet, Hawaii Tourism Authority is urging visitors and residents to be aware of Hurricane Lane as it approaches the Hawaiian Islands.
As of Monday evening, Lane is a Category-4 storm, but if or when it moves near the Hawaiian islands it could be down to a Category-1 or less. Still, that may be big enough to ruin some vacations.
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HTA President and CEO, George Szigeti says its too soon to tell what exactly will happen and adds that, right now, travelers shouldn’t change their plans.
“I think visitors should stick to their plans, but as always the safety and the welfare of residents and our visitors is always top priority,” Szigeti said. “We’re on a daily call with HI-EMA and the National Weather Service is giving us direction.
The Department of Emergency Management is also in communication with HTA and Oahu Visitors Bureau to ensure visitors are prepared. All visitors and residents are encouraged to pay attention to any updates or warnings issued, by tuning into the radio and local TV station, like Island News.
In the event a, Szigeti says hotels are prepared and will usually provide guest with information on what to do.
“The hotels and the activities people are always preparing and making sure that they have that communication plan in place and a place for visitors to go in case of an emergency,” he added. “We hope for the best, but prepare for the worst.”
Hawai‘i Lodging & Tourism Association’s president and CEO, Mufi Hannemann said in a statement that the hospitality industry remains vigilant in placing visitor safety as a major priority.
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“Our industry stakeholders are well aware of the Hurricane season that visits our islands annually, and they all keep up-to-date with emergency preparedness efforts. Due to the vast differences in hotel properties throughout the state, whether it is size, occupancy, geographical location, or staffing, each property has their own emergency plan in place, there is no one size fits all. That being said however, state and county agencies, private sector businesses, associations, and organizations remain proactive in communicating vital information to one another, their members, and their associates. For example, today the Hawai‘i Lodging & Tourism Association put out a memo to our members updating them of Hurricane Lane’s current condition, and equipping them with resources to reference as we progress throughout the week.”
– Mufi Hannemann
In addition, large swells generated by Hurricane Lane are also expected in the coming days, which may result in dangerous surf along shorelines throughout the state. Visitors and residents are reminded that ‘If in doubt, don’t go out.’
Out of town family or guests can register online to receive emergency message alerts. A link can be found on ‘As Seen On” section of KITV’s website.
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