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High wind warning remains in effect for Anchorage Hillside and Turnagain Arm; gust of 77 mph recorded

  • Author: Anchorage Daily News
  • Updated: March 9, 2019
  • Published March 8, 2019

A high wind warning issued for the Anchorage Hillside and Turnagain Arm will continue overnight, with gusts up to 80 mph or stronger possible, the National Weather Service said.

Winds are expected to peak before midnight, before diminishing in the early hours of the morning on Sunday, the weather service said. Winds from 50 mph to 65 mph are forecast on the city’s Hillside as well as along Turnagain Arm, with higher gusts likely.

The strongest gust recorded by 3 p.m. was in Upper DeArmoun area of South Anchorage, at 77 mph.

The Chugach Electric Association reported around 1:52 p.m. that 71 people had lost power in the area east of Hillside Drive, including Ponderosa Drive, Conifer Street and Port Orford Drive. It’s unclear if the outage is related to the wind — a crew dispatched to the area wasn’t able to find a cause by 4:30 p.m., according to an automated message on the company’s outage reporting phone line.

The company has no estimate for when power to the area will be restored, the message said.

Winds of 35 mph to 45 mph are forecast for lower elevations in the city and in Eagle River.

“Friday evening into late Friday night, winds will become gusty for Upper Hillside residents,” the weather service wrote. “Gusts will be as strong as 50 mph. Early Saturday morning, a lull in the winds will develop. By late morning Saturday, a second surge of wind will move over the Anchorage Upper Hillside with sustained winds of 50 to 65 mph with gusts reaching up to 75 mph, but a few gusts may be stronger, especially in exposed locations or in channeled terrain.

"The strongest gusts will be near the Upper Hillside. Lower elevation areas, including Anchorage and Eagle River, may see gusts up to 35 to 45 mph.”

The wind may blow trees over and move loose debris around, which could damage property, the weather service wrote. Tall vehicles should be cautious traveling along the Seward Highway.