DISASTERS

The Latest: Hurricane watch area reduced in Hawaii

  • This NOAA satellite image taken Friday, September 02, 2016 at 01:00 AM EDT shows a clear eye associated with Hurricane Lester as it continues to move westward towards Hawaii. A band of showers has moved inland through the Pacific Northwest, making its way across Idaho and northern Nevada. Much of the rest of the Intermountain west remains unsettled, with scattered showers and embedded thunderstorms across the region and into eastern Montana as well. (NOAA/Weather Underground via AP)

    This NOAA satellite image taken Friday, September 02, 2016 at 01:00 AM EDT shows a clear eye associated with Hurricane Lester as it continues to move westward towards Hawaii. A band of showers has moved inland through the Pacific Northwest, making its way across Idaho and northern Nevada. Much of the rest of the Intermountain west remains unsettled, with scattered showers and embedded thunderstorms across the region and into eastern Montana as well. (NOAA/Weather Underground via AP)  (The Associated Press)

  • This photo shows a fence broken by storm surge from Tropical Storm Madeline at an oceanfront home in Kapoho, Hawaii, Thursday, Sept. 1, 2016. A tropical storm left the Big Island soggy but intact as residents prepared for the possible arrival of another storm, Hurricane Lester. (AP Photo/Audrey McAvoy)

    This photo shows a fence broken by storm surge from Tropical Storm Madeline at an oceanfront home in Kapoho, Hawaii, Thursday, Sept. 1, 2016. A tropical storm left the Big Island soggy but intact as residents prepared for the possible arrival of another storm, Hurricane Lester. (AP Photo/Audrey McAvoy)  (The Associated Press)

  • A man stands on a street in Pahoa, Hawaii after Tropical Storm Madeline moved through the area, Thursday, Sept. 1, 2016. The tropical storm left parts of Hawaii's Big Island soggy but intact as residents of the island state prepare for a second round of potentially volatile tropical weather. Hurricane Lester remains on track to impact the islands this weekend, but possibly after being downgraded to a tropical storm. (AP Photo/Audrey McAvoy)

    A man stands on a street in Pahoa, Hawaii after Tropical Storm Madeline moved through the area, Thursday, Sept. 1, 2016. The tropical storm left parts of Hawaii's Big Island soggy but intact as residents of the island state prepare for a second round of potentially volatile tropical weather. Hurricane Lester remains on track to impact the islands this weekend, but possibly after being downgraded to a tropical storm. (AP Photo/Audrey McAvoy)  (The Associated Press)

The Latest on tropical weather systems threatening Hawaii (all times local):

9:10 a.m.

A hurricane watch has been dropped on Hawaii's Big Island, but the threat remains for Maui County and the island of Oahu as Hurricane Lester barrels through the Pacific.

Meteorologist Bob Burke of the National Weather Service said Friday that the storm weakened to a Category 2 but is expected to remain a hurricane as it passes north of the islands.

Large waves from 15 to 25 feet are expected to pound east-facing shores of major islands.

Burke says low-lying areas could be prone to flooding. He says strong winds could pick up starting Friday night.

Hurricane Lester is on track to blow by Hawaii running north of the island chain and parallel to the islands. It's not expected to hit the islands as a hurricane unless it turns south.