Storm damage all over

Madison Erhardt

UPDATE: 1 p.m.

DriveBC reports Westside Road is now open in two locations after trees brought hydro lines down.

The road had been closed 30 kilometres south of Highway 97 at the Vernon end, and also 10 km south of Fintry.

UPDATE: 10:51 a.m.

Last night's storm across the Okanagan is leaving residents scrambling trying to clean up Mother Nature's mess.

A sailboat was washed up onto Kelowna's Rotary Beach late last night.

"It wasn't secured well enough, I guess. Big waves and big wind, it happens. It's the Okanagan, but I should have known better," the boat owner said.

The man says an aluminum boat of his also looked totalled this morning.

"It was a really nice big fishing boat, and it was beat up. It got off and it looked in really bad shape," he added.

Send pictures and video to [email protected]

UPDATE: 8:50 a.m.

Westside Road is now closed in both directions due to numerous trees downed, some hanging on powerlines.

Another Peachland resident tells Okanagan Oldies 103.9 they are lucky to be alive this morning after the storm snapped a tree, and it came right through the roof of their home, just missing them while they slept.

Castanet is mobilizing its resources and heading out to the numerous incidents across the Okanagan.

Alanna Kelly

UPDATE: 8:02 a.m.

Adam just called the Castanet newsroom to let us know that a tree is down on Westside Road heading north between Bear Creek and La Casa.

He says he was on his way to a construction job, but he has called off his crews for the time being instead of having his guys stuck in traffic all morning.

A sailboat has also washed up on Rotary Beach in Kelowna, likely blown off its moorings by the wind and waves.

UPDATE: 7:18 a.m.

Todd Greening from Vernon has sent us a photo of his daughter's car crushed by a fallen tree.

Todd says the family is trapped in the house right now. As you can see in the photo the power lines to the property are also damaged.

"At this point, we still have power so we're just sitting tight", Greening says he's lived in the Okanagan for 24 years and that he has seen a storm of this nature almost every year, "usually it's a little later."

Crews are busy trying to clear roads and restore power across the valley this morning.

Again you are reminded not to approach downed power lines and to call your electrical provider if you see downed power lines.

UPDATE: 6:45 a.m.

Kelowna fire has been busy this morning responding to calls caused by the wind and lightning storm that blew in from the coast.

At approximately 2:45 a.m. the Kelowna Fire Department Dispatch center received multiple calls reporting a bush/grass fire in the Belgo Road area.

High winds caused power lines to arc and started a fire in the grass below. Fortunately, fire crews got there early and managed to contain the blaze before it could spread.

The wind storm created multiple calls for service during the night with the majority of them dealing with downed power lines damaged by trees knocked over during the wind storm.

Officials remind you not to approach downed power lines. If you see anything call your electrical utility provider and as always your tips and pictures sent to [email protected] are appreciated and encouraged.

UPDATE: 6:15 a.m.

The summer storm that blew in from the coast and worked its way across the interior and Okanagan overnight has left trees strewn in its wake and power lines downed.

Fortis BC is reporting more than 6,000 customers without power in the Belgo area of South Rutland as of 6 a.m.

Hydro BC is working to restore power on the west side of the lake this morning as well.

ORIGINAL: 5:19 a.m.

Strong winds and lightning have been lashing the valley overnight.

A tree has been blown over on Gordon drive near Dorothea Walker Elementary school.

A cold front which brought rain and lightning has been intense with wind gusts as high as 91 km/h recorded in Penticton.

Westside Road is closed in both directions 12 km north of the junction with Highway 97 South because of a tree on the road.

Crews are on scene assessing the situation no detour available.

There are also reports of power lines down and officials will be scouring the radar for lightning strikes which may have sparked brush fires overnight as well. 

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