An earthquake rattled Hawaii early Thursday ahead of two major hurricanes. The 4.5-magnitude earthquake, centered about seven miles from the northern tip of Hawaii’s Big Island, struck around 6:30 a.m. local time, according to the National Weather Service’s Pacific Tsunami Warning Center.
The quake occurred at a depth of 9.7 miles, the U.S. Geological Survey reported. A tsunami warning was not issued and there were no immediate reports of damage.
Meanwhile, Hawaii residents are busy preparing for the arrival of two hurricanes. Hurricane Iselle, a Category 1 hurricane, picked up strength on Wednesday to maintain its hurricane status and will bring heavy rain, high winds and high surf to the islands beginning Thursday night. A second Category 1 storm, Hurricane Julio, is not far behind and could graze the islands over the weekend.
Island residents picked through grocery and supply stores Wednesday night, CNN reported. Several stores quickly ran out of bottled water and left merchants scrambling to get more. "We've been on the phone from very early (Wednesday) morning, working with our vendors trying to get more water. It's been a very difficult situation because everybody is trying to get water," store manager Colin Miura told CNN.
Officials issued hurricane warnings for the Big Island and tropical storm warnings for some of the state’s other islands, including Kahoolawe, Lanai, Maui, Molokai and heavily populated Oahu. Iselle would be the first hurricane to directly hit Hawaii in 22 years.