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High winds lead to power outages, ferry delays

Strong southerly winds whipped through parts of southern Vancouver Island Friday, leading to ferry cancellations and power outages
Waves whipped up by Friday’s high winds hit the Ogden Point Breakwater. DARREN STONE, TIMES COLONIST

Strong southerly winds whipped through parts of southern Vancouver Island Friday, leading to as many as 1,700 power outages on Mayne Island, up to about 1,100 on Salt Spring Island and more than 1,200 in Central Saanich.

By 4 p.m., the total had dropped to just over 4,000 outages on the south Island and none in the north.

High winds initially led to the cancellation of B.C. Ferries’ afternoon and early-evening sailings from Swartz Bay and Tsawwassen, but the schedule was reinstated when the weather improved — although with a two-hour delay.

The 3 p.m. ferries from both Swartz Bay and Tsawwassen were set for 5 p.m., the 5 p.m. sailings for 7 p.m., the 7 p.m. sailings for 9 p.m. and the 9 p.m. sailings for 11 p.m.

The wind warning was issued for Greater Victoria near the water, east Vancouver Island from Duncan to Campbell River, and the southern Gulf Islands.

Environment Canada said the wind is expected to change direction Friday evening, becoming southwest 50 km/h and gusting to 70 km/h, before easing near midnight.

Evening winds are forecast to be slightly stronger on the southern Gulf Islands.

The wind warning is also in place along the Strait of Georgia, Sunshine Coast, and southwestern sections of Metro Vancouver near the water.

Damage to buildings, such as to roof shingles and windows, may occur, said the weather forecaster. Loose objects may be tossed by the wind and cause injury or damage.

High sustained winds on Vancouver Island often result in power outages due to fallen trees and branches on power lines.

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