Norman now a Category 1 hurricane, high surf expected

Hurricane Norman has weakened considerably, but it still a Category 1 hurricane as it continues on a westward path toward the Big Island.

As of 11 a.m. today, Norman was about 690 miles east of Hilo, with maximum sustained winds of 80 mph, moving west at 14 mph. Little change in strength is forecast during the next 48

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hours, with Norman expected to remain a hurricane through early Thursday.

Hurricane-force winds extend outward up to 25 miles from the storm’s center and tropical-storm-force winds extend outward up to 115 miles from the center.

A continued westward motion with a decrease in forward speed is expected through tonight, followed by a turn to the west-northwest on Wednesday, and to the northwest on Wednesday night.

A high surf advisory is in effect for east-facing shores of the Big Island and Maui.

A large east swell generated by Norman is expected to start spreading across the eastern end of the island chain later today.

This will likely produce large surf along east facing shores of the Big Island and Maui starting this afternoon. This swell is also expected to spread to most of the islands west of Maui late tonight and

Wednesday.

Forecasters say the surf may eventually reach high surf warning levels along some of these shorelines starting Wednesday or Wednesday night.

Weather watchers also have their eye on Hurricane Olivia. Still in the Eastern Pacific, Olivia has become a major hurricane.

As of 11 a.m. today, Olivia was about 2,360 miles east of Hilo. The Category 3 storm had maximum sustained winds of 120 mph and was moving west at 12 mph.

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Hurricane-force winds extend outward up to 25 miles from the storm’s center and tropical-storm-force winds extend outward up to 90 miles from the center.

Email John Burnett at jburnett@hawaiitribune-herald.com.

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