The Time Is Now

Support local, independent reporting.

Help the city we love by joining Friends of Willamette Week.


Powerful Winds Cause Tens of Thousands of Portlanders to Lose Power

Sunday’s storm set a low pressure record for the Washington coastline.

Though the low pressure system associated with this past weekend’s “bomb cyclone” was well offshore, over the Pacific Ocean, the weekend’s sharp winds left tens of thousands of Portlanders without electricity.

At the peak of outages, as many as 30,000 people lost electricity on Sunday in Portland, the National Weather Service estimated.

“This was definitely the strongest storm we’ve had this season,” says Shawn Weagle, an NWS meteorologist. “Last year we didn’t really have a whole lot of wind—I’m not going to say storm. I’m going to say event. This was a wind event.”

In the state, the highest wind speed measured occurred at Yaquina Bay Bridge in Newport—82 miles per hour. The strongest measured gust in Portland was 43 mph, a reading taken at Portland Interantional Airport.

While the storm didn’t break any local records, Weagle tells WW that the weekend’s bomb cyclone low pressure system “actually broke the record for the strongest low pressure system recorded off the Washington coast.”

“We’re expecting the wind to die down tonight,” Weagle says. “It could get a little breezy tomorrow, maybe we’ll hit 30 mph. People will notice it, but it won’t be like Sunday.”

By Monday evening, Portland General Electric and Pacific Power had restored electricity to the majority of impacted homes.