Wind storm knocks out power to thousands in Portland metro area - KPTV - FOX 12

Wind storm knocks out power to thousands in Portland metro area

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Firefighters said nobody was hurt when this tree fell onto a home in Forest Grove (Photo: Forest Grove Fire) Firefighters said nobody was hurt when this tree fell onto a home in Forest Grove (Photo: Forest Grove Fire)
PORTLAND, OR (KPTV) -

Tens of thousands of people lost power Saturday afternoon as a strong storm system brought fierce winds to the Portland metro and surrounding areas.

Forecasters were calling for some of the strongest winds the area has seen in years, with gusts in the inland valleys expected to be around 55 miles per hour.

Coastal areas were expected to see gusts between 70 and 80 miles per hour and possibly as high as 100 mph in some spots.

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With the ground soggy from days of heavy rain and trees still full of leaves, many areas saw downed trees and power lines.

As of 3:00 p.m. Saturday, Portland General Electric was reporting more than 44,000 customers without power. PGE said every available crew was called out to help restore power and crews from PG&E in northern California would arrive on Sunday to provide additional assistance.

Utility crews planned to work through the night and for the next several days to restore power to customers as quickly as possible.

Portland Fire and Rescue said crews responded to 62 emergency incidents in a two-hour period Saturday afternoon, 50 of which were related to the wind storm. Firefighters said there were no reports of injuries related to the storm.

Portland Bureau of Transportation reports a tree fell on a power line near NE Sandy and 33rd Avenue which caused a stretch of road to be closed off.

SLIDESHOW: Mobile users click here to see photos of storm damage

The Oregon Zoo announced it would close to the public at 1 p.m. in anticipation of the severe weather and Clackamas County planned to close all county parks at noon.

Power outages led to delays and disruptions for some MAX light rail lines and the Portland Aerial Tram at OHSU ceased operations for the day due to the high winds.

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Wind damage on the coast could be especially troublesome in Manzanita, where residents are still cleaning up after a tornado tore through town Friday morning.

That storm blew down trees and power lines and damaged buildings but there were no reports of serious injuries.

A second tornado was recorded in Oceanside but that twister didn't cause any major damage.

The American Red Cross said it opened a shelter Saturday morning in Clatsop County for people to use during and after the storm. The shelter is located at Lewis and Clark School, 92179 Lewis and Clark Road, south of Astoria. Pets are allowed at the shelter if they are in crates.

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