High winds blast Penticton

A strong storm brought high winds, thunder, lightning and rain to the South Okanagan early Friday morning.

There were no initial reports of any major damage as a result of the storm.

But the high winds brought down branches at some city parks in Penticton, and knocked down signs and patio furniture.

Several residents said they were also awakened by the loud claps of thunder.

Rick Duarte, an orchardist in the Fairview area of Oliver, said there was a lot of rain, lightning and wind where he lives.

"The skies lit up and there was a downpour this morning," he said.

Duarte who experienced widespread loss to his peach and apple crops, during last week's strong storm in Oliver, said the loss to his peach crop is now 100 percent.

"Because of the hail marks on the peaches, the rain gets in and causes rot," he said. "The rot just spreads like wildfire, so this is not a good ending to the soft fruit season."

As of 11 a.m. today the BC River Forecast Centre is ending the high streamflow advisory for the Similkameen River near Hedley and small rivers and creeks near Penticton and in other South Okanagan areas.

The Similkameen and other smaller rivers and creeks responded slightly to the rainfall event last night and early this morning.

But as the rain has eased or ended, with significant additional rainfall amounts not expected, Environment Canada ended the rainfall warning for the region at 7:09 a.m. Friday morning.





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