Gusts of 60 mph forecast as storm heads for region
High winds are likely for the coast and northern parts of Western Washington through this afternoon, potentially leaving a trail of downed trees and blacked-out neighborhoods.
Seattle Times staff reporter
High winds are likely for the Washington coast and northern parts of Western Washington through this afternoon, potentially leaving a trail of downed trees and blacked-out neighborhoods.
The winds may also hit the Seattle area and as far south as Olympia.
Sustained southerly winds of at least 35 to 45 mph, with gusts higher than 60 mph, are expected inland. At the coast, sustained winds will reach 40-50 mph, with gusts up to 70 mph.
The strongest winds in the Seattle area are predicted between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m., easing after that. On the coast, the storm will begin around 4 a.m., and the winds are expected to ease by midday.
Worst affected will be the northern part of the state. The National Weather Service issued a high-wind warning covering San Juan County, western Skagit County, western Whatcom County and the Admiralty Inlet area between Whidbey Island and Port Townsend.
The weather service issued a less-definitive "high wind watch" covering the rest of Western Washington as far south as Olympia.
Johnny Burg, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service, said the storm is one of the "typical windstorms we get every late fall" and could be comparable to the windstorm that swept through central Puget Sound last month.
In the Oct. 18 storm, tens of thousands of people in Central Washington lost power for a time due to downed trees, and a 44-year-old man died while kite surfing on Lake Washington.
"We're not quite as certain we'll see high winds here in the Seattle area" this time, said Burg. "We want everyone to know this is a possibility and have them prepare."
He suggested that people secure anything outside that might blow away and make sure they have flashlights, radios and batteries on hand in case of a power outage.
The center of the developing offshore storm system that meteorologists are watching is expected to hit the coast near northern or central Vancouver Island late this morning.
Dominic Gates: 206-464-2963 or firstname.lastname@example.org
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