Houses on the coast might experience trouble. The winds can really whip up the waves. And people with big eucalyptus trees, breadfruit trees, or albezia trees too near their buildings might be at risk. Yikes, I've got giant eucalyptus trees!!! Oh well. Such is life. But we took the big one near the house down a couple of years ago out of concern over high winds. Our house is surrounded by large ohia trees. Yes there is risk, but not enough to cause us to evacuate. The barn is more at risk because some of the giant eucalyptus trees could reach the barn if they blew down in the right direction. I wouldn't mind seeing the wind take out some of the higher branches. Wind pruning can be good. And I've got a chainsaw for clean up.
In my own area, people are not freaking out. Yes, they are freaking out in some areas, but not in Ka'u. Ka'u residents have been through higher winds many times. And rains of over 10 inches are not all that rare. No one has bothered to go crazy buying stuff. But then, people in my area tend to already have basic supplies stockpiled because of two things.......we're a long distance from Costco and Walmart, so people stock up......there's always the chance of tsunami or lava, so people stay prepared.
It will be interesting if the hurricane actually hits Big Island. Historically there is no record of one doing that. Many people think that a direct hit to Ka'u can't happen. So we shall see. Since I've been living here, the hurricanes heading right for us have always either veered away or broken up into tropical storms. This first one is forecast to smack Ka'u right on the nose, so it will be a good test.