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The Honolulu Advertiser

Posted at 11:19 a.m., Tuesday, July 25, 2006

Weather officials cancel hurricane flight

Advertiser Staff

National Weather Service officials have cancelled the flight of hurricane hunter aircraft to the Islands as Tropical Storm Daniel continues to lose strength.

The tropical weather system, still 800 miles east of Hilo, dropped to tropical storm strength overnight and was a "minimal tropical storm" by 11 a.m., said Jim Weyman, director of the Central Pacific Hurricane Center. Winds were about 40 mph, gusting to 50 mph.

He said Daniel could further weaken to a tropical depression by the end of the day.

Daniel continues to move toward the Big Island, and could pass over the southern part of the island Friday morning. At that time, winds are likely to be about 30 mph, with gusts to 40 mph. The bigger issue will be rain, which could be 2 to 4 inches across the southern slopes of the island and 1 to 3 inches in the Kona area.

"Spotty areas of the Big Island could pick up significant rainfall" in excess of 4 inches, Weyman said.

The effects on other island were expected to be minimal, but during coming days tradewinds will pick up and could bring increased tradewind showers statewide, he said.