Snow cuts power to thousands on Vancouver Island: BC Hydro

Snow cuts power to thousands on Vancouver Island: BC Hydro
Photo: BC Hydro/Twitter
BC Hydro says its crews are working to restore power to people across Vancouver Island and the Lower Mainland. Sunday, Feb. 26, 2023.

Thousands of people across Vancouver Island are waking up without power Sunday morning and for many, snowfall is to blame.

Just over 4,000 people on the North Island and 1,500 on the South Island are without power, BC Hydro’s website said around 10:30 a.m.

According to the company, while some outages are still under investigation, most were caused by snow or trees down across its hydro wires.

Tofino, Ucluelet, Port Alberni and Campbell River are included in BC Hydro’s North Island outage list, while Victoria, Oak Bay and Colwood are on the South Island list.

In Tofino, more than 2,300 people are without power, and in nearby Ucluelet, around 530 are impacted by outages. Yet, residents in this region have already been dealing with a loss of electricity. Around 9:15 p.m. Saturday, BC Hydro said an outage in Tofino was affecting thousands.

Meanwhile, less than 70 people in Port Alberni are currently without power and around 1,000 are impacted by outages in the Campbell River and Sayward areas. 

In Victoria and Colwood combined, less than 100 people are without power due to trees down across wires, and in Oak Bay, just over 1,450 are without power, though BC Hydro notes this outage was planned. 

Environment Canada’s latest weather report says the Ucluelet area got about 32 centimetres of snow Saturday into Saturday night, while Port Alberni got 10-15 cm and, to the north, the Comox-Courtenay area got 3-11 cm. During that same time period, 10 cm fell in Chemainus, 9 cm fell on the Malahat, and 4 cm fell in Victoria.

Around 9:45 a.m., BC Hydro took to Twitter to post a photo of a tree down across hydro wires in the Tofino area.

“A birds-eye view of the damage our crews are facing to restore power to customers in Tofino following heavy snowfall on Vancouver Island,” the company said.

BC Hydro updates its website with the latest power outage information. The company says its crews are either assigned to restore or are currently working to restore the power to people on Vancouver Island.

This is a developing story. Check back for updates.


Ethan MorneauEthan Morneau

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