Hurricane Hector Could Worsen Problems With Kilauea Volcano, Officials Say

NATIONAL HURRICANE CENTER           The 5-day forecast con for Hurricane Hector as of 5 a.m. Friday

Hector is expected to hit Hawaii's Big Island late on Wednesday morning.

On Friday, state officials warned residents and visitors to take precautions in case Hector gets closer to the island chain.

The hurricane is swirling around in the northern Pacific, threatening to hit Hawaii's Big Island and possibly its active volcano, on Wednesday.

Hurricane Hector became a Category 4 storm for a few hours early Sunday but then dipped back to Category 3, still a unsafe force, as it headed across the Pacific, threatening to hit Hawaii's Big Island and possibly its active volcano, officials said early Sunday.

The hurricane is moving about 14 miles per hour with wind speeds up to 140 miles per hour, according to the National Hurricane Center.

Hawaii Mayor Harry Kim said the area was preparing for Hector's arrival, with a briefing held Sunday at the Civil Defense Agency's Emergency Operations Center.

CNN meteorologist Haley Brink said while Hector is heading in Big Island 's general direction, it's too early to tell if it's on a collision course with the volcano.

Tom Travis, Hawaii's emergency management administrator, said: "Hector is our first hurricane this year". Unfortunately, Hector remains too far away to predict if it will directly impact the state or pass to the south, as average track errors are still around 200 miles this many days out.

A tropical storm watch is in effect Monday for waters south of the Big Island. At least 700 homes have been destroyed, authorities estimate, and thousands of people have been displaced. Kilauea's latest volcanic event began more than three months ago, sending destructive currents of lava into neighborhoods on the island's southeast side.

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