Windstorm that swept BC south coast among 'most severe' in years: Hydro

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It's one of several communities dealing with the aftermath of Thursday's storm, which BC Hydro is describing as among the most severe in many years.

Posts on the utility's website say Vancouver Island was the hardest hit, while tens of thousands of customers remained without power overnight from northern Vancouver Island all the way east to Hope.

Most of the damage to power lines, power poles and transformers was on Vancouver Island, where a total of about 55,000 homes are still without power.

"Due to the extent of the damage, many customers will be without power throughout the day and for some customers it could be a couple of days", BC Hydro said in a written statement on Saturday morning.

They found that a tree had fallen on a tent occupied by five people, killing a woman and injuring two men.

A boat is battered by waves and slammed into the White Rock Pier that was severely damaged during a windstorm, in White Rock, B.C., on Thursday December 20, 2018.

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One person was trapped at the end of the pier and had to be airlifted by helicopter to safety at the height of the storm but no one was hurt.

"I've lived here 50 years, I've never seen a storm like this". Winds could reach up to 110 km/h over exposed coastal sections this evening.

However, MacDonald said the threat of further property damage exists since trees loosened by the previous storm could topple.

As of 6 am on Friday morning, crews restored power to 400,000 customers since the windstorm began Thursday morning.

BC Ferries service had returned to normal by Thursday night following more than 80 cancelled sailings on at least 13 routes, but big lineups are expected on Friday as delayed travellers try to finally get their holiday plans underway.

BC Ferries is expected to update the situation this afternoon.

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