A late Sunday afternoon of surging gusts and booming transformers left thousands without power across northern Capitol Hill and Seattle.
While the Capitol Hill area made it through the initial brunt of the afternoon windstorm, another surge in windy conditions after 3 PM toppled trees, branches, and utility wires.
At least two big booms were heard around 3:30 PM when a large swath of power outages struck around northern Capitol Hill. Crews were called to an area near 22nd and Madison to deal with one incident. Power outages in that area left many buildings dark including the nearby Safeway where passengers were stuck in an elevator. On E Denny just east of 12th Ave, a tree toppled onto a parked car and blocked the street. There were no reported injuries. Wires were also reported down in the 400 block of 11th Ave E and a tree leaning precariously on wires forced the closure of an alley in the 200 block of Belmont Ave E.
The day has also been deadly. A man was killed earlier Sunday when his car was struck by a falling tree at Seward Park. A toddler child inside the vehicle survived the accident.
The winds reaching sustained gusts above 50 MPH were also strong enough to require closure of the 520 bridge. Gusts above 40 MPH were measured at a weather station on Capitol Hill.
Seattle City Light was dealing with outages across the city impacting more than 40,000 customers. Its last estimate for restoration around Capitol Hill has been pushed back to 3:38 AM Monday morning. City Light says the cause of the outage is a tree that fell on wires.
It’s the second wind-related power outage for the area this week. Thursday morning also brought a brief outage to the area around North Capitol Hill.
Forecasts called for the biggest gusts to begin subsiding after 5 PM.
UPDATE 7:00 PM: We’re getting reports of power back on in some of the Hill outage area.
— davey jones (@daavey) March 14, 2016
— Rob Mauceri (@rmauceri) March 14, 2016
— Feiya Wang (@RoughDreamer) March 14, 2016