Surfer Rides Oahu Floodwaters as Passing Traffic Whips Up Waves

A surfer took advantage of traffic on the flooded roadways in Haleiwa, Hawaii, on March 9, catching waves made by vehicles passing through.

Video shot by Ben Metaele shows the man paddling into a wave of floodwater created the momentum of Metaele’s vehicle.

“There was a severe rain storm this day and we were rushing to catch our flight at the airport in Honolulu and the roads were flooded,” Mataele told Storyful. “As we went slowly through this particular flood zone there was a guy with a surfboard in which we were able to create a wave for him to surf.”

Officials had ordered Haleiwa residents to evacuate at short notice on March 8 due to “life-threatening” and “catastrophic” flash flooding from torrential rains. The National Weather Service in Honolulu sounded the alarm after observing fast-rising water levels in the Opaeula stream, and described the event as a “flash flood emergency”. The evacuation order was withdrawn seven hours later, shortly before midnight, after floodwaters had subsided. Credit: Ben Mataele via Storyful