UPDATE: Almost 17,000 without power on southern Vancouver Island, Gulf Islands

Crews cut up a fallen tree near Elk Lake on May 18. The transportation ministry warned drivers of falling debris resulting from high winds impacting Vancouver Island. (Courtesy of the Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure)Crews cut up a fallen tree near Elk Lake on May 18. The transportation ministry warned drivers of falling debris resulting from high winds impacting Vancouver Island. (Courtesy of the Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure)
While unsettled, the local weather over the Saanich Peninsula has also added this wonderful splash of colour in the form of a rainbow over Patricia Bay in North Saanich Thursday morning around 9:20 a.m. (Courtesy Michael Gara)While unsettled, the local weather over the Saanich Peninsula has also added this wonderful splash of colour in the form of a rainbow over Patricia Bay in North Saanich Thursday morning around 9:20 a.m. (Courtesy Michael Gara)

Heavy winds hitting Greater Victoria have caused trees to fall near main traffic arteries.

Across Greater Victoria, BC Hydro was reporting approximately 5,500 customers without power as of 1 p.m. Wednesday.

More than 17,000 are without power on southern Vancouver Island and the Gulf Islands while 25,000 customers are without power on the northern portion of the Island.

On the Saanich Peninsula, a downed tree in North Saanich took out a powerline on McTavish Road. That outage is impacting about 230 customers.

Crews had to briefly close a southbound section of the Pat Bay Highway just before 10 a.m. after a tree fell near the roadway at Elk Lake. The transportation ministry said drivers can expect delays as traffic clears and it also warned motorists to watch out for debris caused by the gusts.

Municipalities across the region are reporting downed trees and other debris caused by the wind.

In Langford, the West Shore Arts Council’s unveiling of Global Root’s mural at the Greater Victoria Public Library branch on Lakepoint Way was postponed due to the high winds.

READ: Strong wind gusts to hit Vancouver Island on Wednesday


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