The day after Rep. Neil Abercrombie (D-Hawaii) left office to begin his run for governor, his state was faced with a tsunami generated by the magnitude 8.8 earthquake thousands of miles away in Chile.
In two separate interviews from Honolulu by phone with Fox News on Saturday as islanders awaited the surge, Abercrombie said preparedness made the difference and, even though 50,000 Hawaiians were being evacuated from coastal areas, the scene was "not chaotic at all."
"Every hotel has its protocols and its marching orders," he said, noting that hotels had moved occupants to the higher floors and that everyone was "just waiting" to see how the ocean would rise. The newly retired congressman added that all elected officials and civil officials were in touch and coordinating efforts.
"Everything is working just the way it's supposed to be," he said, adding that Hawaiians could be on alert for hours.
"You prepare with a lot of aloha," Abercrombie said. "We have the aloha spirit out here" -- which, he said, meant "there's no panic; there's no undue concern. We're used to the idea that nature rules out in Hawaii."
Abercrombie was looking to get back to the next order of business soon. "Next thing, I'll be getting into campaign mode," he added.