British Columbia

Over 75,000 customers without power at height of 2nd B.C. storm

A fierce windstorm knocked out power to thousands of residents on Vancouver Island, the Lower Mainland and the southern Interior - and another may hit the region tomorrow.

Storm triggers tornado warning for Washington State coast south of Seattle

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      A fierce windstorm knocked out power to more than 75,000 customers on Vancouver Island and the Lower Mainland at its peak on Friday.

      The storm caused trees to fall throughout the region including one that struck and killed a 15-year-old boy in Surrey.

      The easterly moving storm first hit Vancouver Island, where customers were without power by 2:30 a.m. PT, with thunder and lightning waking many residents on the south end of the island.

      But while power was quickly restored to most affected areas, the storm moved to Metro Vancouver.

      Gusts as strong as 100 km/h were reported in many areas and at the height of the storm more than 75,000 customers on the Lower Mainland and Sunshine Coast were without power, with trees coming down in several communities.

      The Fraser Valley was the worst affected area, but many parts of Vancouver, Richmond and Coquitlam were also affected, along with communities across the length of Vancouver Island. 

      Hydro working to restore power

      (A full list of outages can be found here)

      By 7 p.m. PT, the number of customers without power had been reduced to 45,000, and the wind warning for Metro Vancouver had been lifted.

      However, BC Hydro is warning that power may not be restored to some areas this evening.

      "We currently have over 100 PLTs in the field working through the extensive damage as quickly and safely as possible," it wrote in an update. 

      "Exact restoration times will not be available until full damage assessments are complete later this evening. Based on the amount of damage some customers may be without power overnight."

      Traffic was also jammed on Highway 1 in Metro Vancouver after a fatal crash closed the Barnett Highway for much of the morning commute.

      TransLink is warning fallen trees are causing delays on some bus routes, and virtually all flights out of Vancouver International Airport have been delayed. 

      BC Ferries cancelled the 3 p.m. sailings in both directions between Horseshoe Bay and Departure Bay, along with the vessel that goes from Tsawwassen to several Gulf Islands. 

      For some time this afternoon, all vessels en route to their destinations between Swartz Bay and Tsawwassen and Duke Point to Tsawwassen were being held because of high winds. 

      Tornado warning issued in Washington state

      Just south of the border, the storm has triggered a tornado warning for parts of the coast south of Seattle.

      "Please find a safe place immediately if you are in the path of this storm!" said a tweet issued by the National Weather Service.

      3rd storm on its way

      A third storm is expected Saturday when the remnants of Super Typhoon Songda arrive, setting the stage for more wind over the weekend.

      Officials are warning residents to be prepared for more power outages, flooding, downed trees and potential landslides.

      Environment Canada says total rainfall accumulations from these storms could exceed 200 mm for west and inland areas of Vancouver Island. Inner coastal regions could get more than 100 mm with even higher amounts near the mountains.

      Thunder and lightning hit the south end of Vancouver Island on Friday morning. (Environment Canada)