Flossie: Hawaii braces for weakened tropical storm

HONOLULU (AP) — Residents and tourists across Hawaii are bracing for heavy rains and strong winds from Tropical Storm Flossie while the system weakens as it approaches the state.

National Weather Service officials said they expect people on the Big Island and Maui to see the brunt of the storm on Monday morning, with wind gusts up to 60 mph, possible flooding and waves up to 18 feet high.

Hawaii Gov. Neil Abercrombie signed an emergency declaration in anticipation of the storm, while tourism officials warned travelers to double check plans with airlines and hotels.

The U.S. Coast Guard also closed three ports on the Big Island and Maui.

The center of the storm is forecast to pass south of Oahu and Kauai by Tuesday morning.

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