Sep. 1—High winds hit the Anchorage Bowl on Thursday, knocking out power to thousands as the remnants of a tropical storm blow into Southcentral Alaska.
The original forecast called for gusts up to 50 mph at lower elevations, with the Anchorage Hillside seeing possible winds of up to 60 or 70 mph. By Thursday evening, the weather service had updated that forecast to call for gusts between 30-50 mph in the Anchorage Bowl, with gusts of 40-60 mph across the Hillside.
A 69 mph gust was recorded near Potter Marsh on Thursday morning, according to meteorologist Kenna Mitchell. Gusts up to 50 mph were recorded near O'Malley Road and there was a 43 mph gust at Ted Stevens Anchorage International Airport, she said.
Almost all Chugach Electric customers in Anchorage had their power restored by Friday morning. Nearly 8,000 customers were without power at one point Thursday.
Strong winds downed trees throughout town that hit power lines and caused outages, said Julie Hasquet, the spokeswoman for Chugach Electric. The biggest outages were near DeBarr Road as well as in the Mountain View neighborhood.
About 1,700 Matanuska Electric Association customers were without power Thursday evening, mostly in Chugiak and Peters Creek, and the Willow area. Only a few were without power by early Friday.
Other areas of Southcentral Alaska also experienced power outages on Thursday afternoon, with just over 1,100 Homer Electric Association customers impacted.
At the Alaska State Fair in Palmer, a limited number of rides were operating at the carnival midway due to the weather Thursday afternoon.
Forecasters say the wind could remain gusty, in the range of 25 mph to 40 mph, through Friday afternoon or evening. Mitchell said later Thursday that the weather service still expects the system that's causing these winds to move out of the area by Friday afternoon or evening.
"It's not going to stall out anywhere," she said.
The weather system associated with the wind advisory is part of the remnants of Tropical Storm Damrey, which began in the western Pacific Ocean as a typhoon but didn't make landfall or cause significant damage.