Storm chops power, cancels ferry sailings

A storm front crossing the B.C. coast early Tuesday morning left some people in the dark.

A storm front crossing the B.C. coast early Tuesday left some people in the dark and others stranded at ferry terminals.

David Jones, Environment Canada meteorologist, said an intense low-pressure system crossed northern Vancouver Island and Hecate Strait around midnight, bringing high winds and rain.

“The winds were circulating from the front and really flew into a frenzy,” he said.

Wind gusts reached 76 km/h at Entrance Island off Gabriola Island and more than 80 km/h on the waters off Parksville.

Ted Olynyk, B.C. Hydro spokesman, said at the peak of the storm close to 3,000 homes in north Nanaimo, Lantzville and Gabriola Island were without power as falling trees downed lines.

Hydro crews had the majority of the power back up by 4:30 a.m.

Wind gusts reached up to 100 km/h at the Tsawwassen ferry terminal, cancelling the 5:15 a.m. and 7:45 a.m. sailings from Tsawwassen and Duke Point. All vehicles and passengers delayed at Duke Point caught the 10:15 a.m. sailing.

Jones said another wind and rain event is expected to hit the coast around 5 a.m. Thursday (Nov. 24).

“It’s going to be further north than the last one so it might not be as windy,” he said. “Saturday is going to be more of a rain event than wind. We’re going to see heavy rain.”