The U.S. military is moving assets away from Hawaii as the category 4 Hurricane Lane barrels toward the islands, officials announced Wednesday.

Subs and ships currently in port at Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam are heading out to sea to avoid the storm but will be positioned to help respond after the hurricane passes, base spokesman Chuck Anthony said.

Anthony would not disclose how many ships were in port and are now heading to sea, but said Hawaii is home for about two dozen vessels.

Vessels undergoing maintenance are being moved to locations “better suited to ride out the storm,” he said.

Warships will stay at sea until the storm passes, and aircraft on the joint Navy-Air Force base already departed or are preparing to leave, Anthony said.

Hickam is home to two airlift squadrons and a fighter squadron.

The latest National Weather Service forecasts show Lane passing west of the Big Island but will likely smack the smaller islands by early Friday.

Forecasters use a cone to indicate the probable path of a storm, not its size. They caution that hazardous conditions often occur outside the cone drawn on maps.

The islands are under hurricane warnings and watches and the weather service predicts maximum sustained winds of 155 mph.

Geoff is a senior staff reporter for Military Times, focusing on the Navy. He covered Iraq and Afghanistan extensively and was most recently a reporter at the Chicago Tribune. He welcomes any and all kinds of tips at

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