Windstorm topples trees, knocks out power to tens of thousands in Portland metro

Published: Dec. 27, 2022 at 5:50 PM PST
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PORTLAND Ore. (KPTV) - First it was ice, now it’s wind and heavy rains wreaking havoc across the Pacific Northwest, as hundreds of thousands of people lost power across Oregon and southwest Washington.

Mix in flooding and downed trees toppling over roadways and homes Tuesday, and it made for a busy day for road and repair crews, while giving neighbors another reason to stay home for at least the second time in just a week.

The Spielman family was just one of the thousands in the Milwaukie area who lost power early Tuesday.

“We have a generator that is hooked up to our refrigerator,” James Spielman said. “We just light candles and play board games –use headlamps.”

Portland General Electric reported more than 100,000 Oregon customers without power by the afternoon, with most of its outages concentrated in the Portland metro area and Willamette valley. More than 34,000 customers were still without power by 10 a.m. Wednesday.

SEE ALSO: 4th Washington state electrical substation vandalized

While the heavy wind was a spectacle for some, it was downright scary for others.

Ryan Dillon said not one, but three large trees fell around his house in the morning. Two fell in the front yard, and another came crashing down in the backyard.

“All three of these came down within about twenty minutes of each other,” Dillon said. “There was a lot of crashing and a lot of loud popping sounds from the trees. It was kind of surreal honestly, seeing all of that and hearing all of the trees snapping and stuff.”

While a family car did fall victim to one tree – everyone – and everything else is all okay, for now.

“Now it’s just kind of making sure no other trees come down and hit other houses and all the cleanup stuff that’s going to be required,” Dillon said.

Updates on outages can be found here for PGE customers and here for Pacific Power customers.