Powerful winds cause widespread power outages in the Bay Area, low elevation snow in forecast, California
More than 100 000 customers of Pacific Gas and Electric (PG&E) in the Bay Area of San Francisco remained without power on Tuesday night, February 21, 2023, due to the strong winds that whipped the region.
- Bay Area can expect more rain, cold temperatures, low elevations snow, thunderstorms, and gusty winds in the days ahead.
- The last time Bay Area experienced widespread sea-level snow was in 1976.
San Francisco Bay Area was hit by strong winds on Tuesday, resulting in power outages for more than 112 000 customers, with over half of them on the Peninsula and in the South Bay, and most of them still without electricity as of late Tuesday night, according to PG&E. At 03:45 LT on February 22 (11:45 UTC), 66 849 customers in Bay Area were still without power.
San Francisco saw gusts up to 117 km/h (73 mph) in Golden Gate Park at 16:20 LT, with the National Weather Service recording gusts of 101 km/h (63 mph) at a Twin Peaks station, and widespread gusts between 64 km/h and 88 km/h (40-55 mph) affecting the west side communities of Twin Peaks, Diamond Heights, and the Presidio. An emergency news text by ALERTSF advised residents to drive carefully, secure outdoor items, and call 911 for down power lines and 311 for down trees.
The power company revealed that 106 360 customers were still experiencing power outages as of 21:30 LT. Falling trees, limbs, and flying debris hitting power lines caused the widespread outages, with wind gusts expected to reach 88 km/h (55 mph) overnight into Wednesday morning.
Bay Area can expect more rain, cold temperatures, low elevations snow, thunderstorms, and gusty winds in the days ahead.
The last widespread snowfall event at sea level in the Bay Area was on February 5, 1976.
A massive winter storm will impact the Four Corners region and the central Rockies into the Upper Midwest and New England in the next few days, while a slowly developing storm will drop down the West Coast to deliver mountain snow and even low-elevation snowfall, the National Weather Service warns.
All of these locations will see moderate to extreme winter impacts with travel not advised in the Upper Midwest due to blizzard conditions.
1 More than 106,000 PG&E customers still without power in Bay Area amid powerful winds – San Francisco Chronicle – February 21, 2023
Featured image: NOAA/GOES-18, RAMMB/CIRA, The Watchers. Acquired at 21:40 UTC on February 21, 2023
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