Fire snarls traffic

Traffic was slowed to a crawl Wednesday afternoon on Queen Kaahumanu Highway in Kailua-Kona after a brush fire broke out makai of the major thoroughfare near the Natural Energy Laboratory of Hawaii Authority. The fire, reported about 3:45 p.m. Wednesday, scorched about 5 acres before firefighters could get the blaze under control. County firefighters were assisted by volunteer firefighters and Chopper 2 in dousing the flames. No injuries were reported. (Laura Ruminski/West Hawaii Today)

Heavy rains hit Maui as Olivia approaches Hawaii

HONOLULU — Maui was hit with heavy rain and powerful winds Wednesday as a gradually weakening tropical storm neared Hawaii, with forecasters predicting Tropical Storm Olivia could dump 5 to 10 inches (12 to 25 centimeters). Some places could get as much as 15 inches.