British Columbia

Wind wreaks havoc, leaves thousands without power in B.C.

BC Hydro crews are working to restore electricity for thousands of customers on the Lower Mainland and Vancouver Island, while BC Ferries sailings also impacted, along with some mountain resort operations.

BC Hydro scrambles to restore electricity across the Lower Mainland and Vancouver Island

Many residents across Metro Vancouver woke up to downed trees and power lines on Sunday Jan. 21, 2018. (D'Arcy Ashley/Twitter)

Thousands of British Columbians woke up without power Sunday morning after strong winds knocked out hydro across the South Coast.

According to BC Hydro, around 65,000 customers woke up in the dark in Metro Vancouver, the Sunshine Coast and across Vancouver Island. 

"The high winds have caused significant damage to our system, including downed power lines and damaged power poles," said BC Hydro spokesperson Tanya Fish.

Environment Canada had issued a wind warning for Metro Vancouver, the Sunshine Coast, the Southern Gulf Islands and much of Vancouver Island. It ended at 12:18 p.m. PT.

However, the stormy morning backed up sailings with B.C. Ferries and even contributed to the closure of some ski resorts at local mountains.

Woman hit by falling branches

There were also injuries related to the strong winds.

Around 9 a.m. PT, emergency officials in Port Moody — a 40 minute drive east of Vancouver — rushed to help a woman injured after falling branches glanced off a bus and struck her as she was walking in the area of Cecile Drive and Evergreen Drive.

Environment Canada has issued a wind warning for Metro Vancouver, the Sunshine Coast, the Southern Gulf Islands and much of Vancouver Island. ( Tina Lovgreen/CBC)

Other people on the bus got off to help remove the branches from on top of the victim as paramedics and firefighters arrived.

Police say the 23-year-old was sent to hospital with minor injuries.

Heavy winds knocked down trees across Vancouver. (Ian Hanomansing/CBC)

The Port Moody Police said it responded to six hazardous events from wind damage and 32 others such as downed power lines and fallen trees.

In Vancouver, crews went out to 17 storm-related problems, including four street lights, 12 traffic signal issues and one damaged sign.

Residents also reported more than 30 cases of fallen branches on streets via the Vancouver's 311 phone line.

Fish, from BC Hydro, is advising anyone who comes across a downed power line to keep a distance of 10 metres from it and to call 911.

Officials asked drivers to watch out for loose debris and to be cautious on roads.

A tree rests against the roof of a home in Burnaby B.C. on Sunday Jan. 21, 2018 following strong winds in the region. (@cookncarpenter/Twitter)