Power outages in Central Okanagan as tree branches snap under weight of snow

Some power returning

UPDATE: 5:30 p.m.

Power has now been restored to all but a few people on the Westside.

BC Hydro says only nine customers on the 2000 block of Boucherie Road remain without power.

Power to those homes went out at 3:48 p.m. No word when it will be restored.

About 1,700 customers on the west side of Highway 97 stretching from Peachland south of Summerland remain in the dark.

Power to those homes went off about about 1:45 this afternoon due to trees coming down on power lines.

That power is expected to be restored at any time.

UPDATE: 3:30 p.m.

Power has returned for all but a small group of residents on the Westside.

BC Hydro says only 381 customers remain without power.

Those residents, west of Pritchard Drive, and southeast of Boucherie Road, likely won't have power restored until about 5:30 this afternoon.

At its peak, about 3,800 customers were left in the dark when power went out about 11:10 Friday morning.

Cause of the outage is blamed on trees falling on power lines.

This is the same area that went without power for about two-and-a-half hours Wednesday evening.

UPDATE 3 p.m.

About 1,700 BC Hydro customers in Faulder, west of Summerland, and the southern part of Peachland are also without power.

The utility says electricity has been out since 10:50 a.m., caused by a downed tree on the power lines.

As of 2:35 p.m., however, BC Hydro said its crews status on the outage was “suspended.” It is not known when power will be restored. 

In West Kelowna, crews are on site dealing with two large outages in Gellatly, WFN and South Boucherie — affecting 3,800 customers. The cause of both outages remains under investigation. 

UPDATE 1:20 p.m.

Power has been restored to the 1,353 homes near downtown Kelowna Friday afternoon. 

Outages remain on the west side of Okanagan Lake, where about 3,800 homes are without power in the Gellatly, WFN and South Boucherie areas. 

UPDATE 11:40 a.m.

Two large power outages also have thousands of people in the dark on the Westside.

Roughly 3,800 BC Hydro customers are in the dark in Gellatly, WFN and South Boucherie.

The power has been out since about 11:10 a.m. and crews have been assigned to both outages. There is no estimate when power will be restored.

UPDATE: 11:25 a.m.

Hundreds of homes are now without power near Kelowna's downtown core Friday morning, as snow falls throughout the Interior. 

The power outage occurred just after 11 a.m., bordered between Gordon Drive, Spall Road, Clement Avenue and Harvey Avenue. Currently 1,353 homes are impacted by the outage, but FortisBC has not yet disclosed the cause. 

Another 11 homes are without power at the base of Dilworth Mountain, near Valley Road. FortisBC says that outage was caused by a downed tree on a power line.

ORIGINAL: 10:45 a.m.

Trees that haven't had a chance to drop their leaves yet are coming down under the weight of Friday morning's significant snowfall across the Interior.

Loud booms echoed across Kelowna's City Park Friday morning, as large branches snapped off under the weight of the soggy snow.

And City of Kelowna crews are busy cutting down the branches of the trees that line the downtown core's sidewalks, before the snow takes them down too.

The early-season snow means many deciduous trees haven't yet dropped their leaves. And with the wet, heavy snow expected to fall throughout the day, the extra weight could continue to topple trees.

“The trees are full of leaves, we haven't even had frost and now it's snowing like this,” said Doug Lundquist, meteorologist with Environment Canada. “I'm worried about the possibility of downed lines.”

No power outages have been reported around Kelowna as of 10:45 a.m. Friday morning.

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