Powerful wind gusts trigger outages, flooding in Windsor-Essex, Chatham-Kent

Powerful wind gusts trigger outages, flooding in Windsor-Essex, Chatham-Kent

Wind gusts between 70 km/h to 90 km/h per hour have caused outages, as well as flooding, across Windsor-Essex and Chatham-Kent. 

Chris Williams, a Windsor resident who lives on Prince Road, said strong winds knocked down a tree in his backyard, adding he and his neighbours are experiencing a power outage which could last for several hours.

According to Hydro One spokesperson Richard Francella, there are approximately 12 outages across Windsor-Essex region, with most affecting fewer than 20 customers.

"The largest outage … that I'm seeing is about 60 customers in that region," he said, adding one outage "just west" of Harrow has affected approximately 40 customers.

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"Our crew are monitoring — they're on standby in case the winds get worse and causes damages to our system."

Francella said Hydro One has seen several damaged power lines, as well as towers that are slightly slanted as a result of strong winds.

"We try to prioritize emergencies and restoration efforts in a way that brings power back to the largest number of customers in the shortest period of time," he said.

Francella recommended residents stay away from damaged or downed power lines, adding residents who come across damaged hydro equipment should contact the police and Hydro One.

According to Environment Canada, the wind gusts could peak at 80 km/h in the late morning, with the potential to reach 90 km/h in the afternoon. The strong southwesterly winds could persist into Wednesday evening.

According to meteorologist Rob Kuhn, winds will slowly ease off overnight.

Watch the effects of strong winds along Erie Shore Drive in Chatham-Kent:

Environment Canada warns strong winds may break tree branches or toss loose objects. Several outages have been reported throughout the day.

"If you're on any area highway that gets exposed to a strong crosswind, just take your time," said Kuhn. "It'll be tricky ... could make for a bit of a challenge for driving later today."

Kuhn said there is an "unusual" sharp cold front coming through the area. 

"Mother Nature's deciding that it's plunging off and it's going to drop to just above freezing tonight," said Kuhn. "It will be quite a bit cooler with brisk winds under mostly cloudy skies."

The special weather statement affects Windsor-Essex and Chatham-Kent, including Leamington and Rondeau Park. Sarnia-Lambton is also under a weather advisory.