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Cleanup continues after powerful windstorm

first_imgA day after strong winds raked Clark County and left tens of thousands of people without power, crews continued cleaning up in calmer conditions Friday.Dozens of power outages were still scattered across the county Friday but affected only a fraction of the more than 62,000 customers who were in the dark at one point Thursday night, according to Clark Public Utilities. Crews worked through the night and into the morning, navigating fallen trees, damaged power lines and poles, said utility spokeswoman Erica Erland.“There is still a lot of cleanup and repairs to our system that need to be made,” Erland said.In this case, the utility and others saw it coming. Weather forecasters had predicted the strong windstorm, and issued warnings well in advance of its arrival. To prepare, Clark Public Utilities brought in reinforcements knowing its workers were in for a busy night, Erland said. Among those who helped were public utility crews from Benton, Franklin and Klickitat counties, which largely missed the brunt of the storm.“When we have something forecasted like this wind event … we’ve kind of made those calls already,” Erland said.The storm brought winds as strong as 60 mph in Vancouver, and close to 90 mph on the Oregon Coast, according to the National Weather Service in Portland. Though much weaker, Thursday’s storm followed a similar track as the infamous Columbus Day Storm of 1962, according to the weather service.This week’s wind packed a strong enough punch to topple trees across the county. It came one month after a Veterans Day storm produced similarly strong winds, but caused far fewer power outages. Another potent storm swept through the region in October.last_img read more