Windstorm that swept B.C. south coast among ‘most severe’ in years: Hydro

VANCOUVER — White Rock Mayor Darryl Walker says it could take months and millions of dollars to repair the city’s beloved pier after part of it was ripped away during an intense windstorm that swept over British Columbia’s southern coast.

It’s one of several communities dealing with the aftermath of Thursday’s storm, which BC Hydro is describing as among the most severe in many years.

The 457 metre pier will be closed until further notice after several boats broke away from their moorings and battered the middle of the pier, eventually collapsing a 30-metre section, Walker said.

“The damage that was done to our pier appears to be something that will take some months for us to recoup from, it’s extremely damaged,” he said.

The force of the waves also tossed logs and concrete picnic tables onto the popular promenade along the city’s waterfront and Walker said that area will be cordoned off while repairs are made.

One person was trapped at the end of the pier and had to be airlifted by helicopter to safety at the height of the storm but no one was hurt.

BC Hydro said more than 100,000 customers were still without power by late Friday afternoon and some could remain in the dark for days as crews work to repair outages on Vancouver Island, Metro Vancouver, the Sunshine Coast and Fraser Valley.

“Yesterday’s windstorm was one of the most severe storms BC Hydro has experienced in years,” a post on the utility’s website said.

At its height, about 400,000 customers lost electricity and many remained without power overnight.

Environment Canada says gusts topped 100 km/h just south of Vancouver.

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