With wind gusts of up to 100 km/h expected to hit the BC coastline Thursday, BC Hydro is reporting that hundreds of thousands of customers are already without power because of high winds.
BC Hydro said as of 2 pm, power was knocked out to 300,000 customers across the province, with outages reported in Metro Vancouver, the Fraser Valley as well as Vancouver Island.
The hardest hit areas are Surrey, Langley and Abbotsford.
The company says there is extensive damage from branches and trees breaking and hitting electrical equipment and power lines.
- Power outages across Metro Vancouver and Fraser Valley as winds whip coast
- BC Ferries cancels sailings on all major routes due to high winds
- Wind warning in effect for Metro Vancouver with gusts up to 100 km/h
- There's currently no service on a section of SkyTrain this morning due to high winds
“Continued strong winds have made damage assessment and repairs difficult, but where safe, crews are busy repairing damaged power lines, poles and transformers. All available resources will work throughout the day and into the evening to safely restore power,” it said in a statement.
Compounding the issue is reports of downed power lines. BC Hydro says people should stay at least 10 metres away from downed lines and call 911 immediately if they see one.
The service is pleading for the public to be patient as its crews work to restore power.
It says people in the region should be ready for outages throughout the day.
It’s getting stormy out there! Wind alerts are in effect for many parts of #BC today. Make sure you’re prepared in the event of a power outage: https://t.co/WZ7oZ6Q9HQ #BCStorm pic.twitter.com/kconzzk1U3
— BC Hydro (@bchydro) December 20, 2018
Click here to see a full list of BC Hydro power outages by region.