Natural disasters warnings that fizzle in Hawaii make students unsure about how or if to prepare

Written by: 
Keryna Monson~Multimedia Journalist

BYU-Hawaii students said they have mixed feelings on preparing for and taking tropical storm warnings seriously. Some said they have stopped preparing for them at all while others feel as though they are under prepared.

“I feel like the Lord really knew what he was doing when he put this university here,” said Emily Smithson, from California, a recent graduate from BYU-Hawaii. “I can’t really imagine that we would set up his institution in an area that was subject to life threatening storms every year.” Smithson went to school here for three years and said she has never seen a storm to the magnitude for which the news says to prepare.

Taylor Moyes, a junior majoring in education from Arizona, has been going to BYUH for “about two and a half years now and there has never been a true emergency. I prepared for the first three I think, but since nothing happened I feel like it just an over precaution.”

Addison Kirk, a junior majoring in music composition from Idaho, said, “I’ve been through two tsunami warnings. The first one happened when I lived on the second floor of the hales so I just stayed in my room. Then the second one came when I was living off campus. When it was time to make the trek to the temple hill, I found myself unprepared and unsure of what to bring. Even though I was safe, it made me realize how important it is to prepare ahead of time.”

Since Hawaii is out in the middle of the Pacific Ocean, it is subject to some threatening tropical storms each year and tsunami warnings. Hawaii’s National Weather Forecast Center predicts that more than half of the damages claimed each year could be avoided if people prepared ahead of time.