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PSE expects to restore all Whatcom County power by Tuesday morning

A motorist notifies Bellingham Police officer Jeremy Woodward that a tree has fallen on power lines on Samish Way in Bellingham during the afternoon windstorm Sunday, March13, 2016. Woodward was blocking traffic on Wilkin Street near Lake Padden after a tree fell on power lines.
A motorist notifies Bellingham Police officer Jeremy Woodward that a tree has fallen on power lines on Samish Way in Bellingham during the afternoon windstorm Sunday, March13, 2016. Woodward was blocking traffic on Wilkin Street near Lake Padden after a tree fell on power lines. pdwyer@bhamherald.com

Hundreds of Puget Sound Energy customers remained without electricity most of Monday, March 14, after a powerful but relatively brief Sunday windstorm.

Classes at Beach Elementary School on Lummi Island were canceled for the day, but other schools in Whatcom County were running on normal schedules.

Puget Sound Energy crews were moving from outage to outage. The largest remaining one by midday Monday affected 373 customers in the Lake Samish area; power was expected to be restored by Monday evening. Another large outage affected the Burk Road area east of Blaine, according to the PSE outage map. Most outages affected only a few homes.

PSE expected power to be restored to all Whatcom County customers by 8 a.m. Tuesday, with most getting their electricity back before then.

Mount Baker Highway near Chandelier Lodge at milepost 35 reopened, after falling trees blocked the road Sunday evening.

Bellingham Police officer Jeremy Woodward stops traffic on Wilkin Street near Lake Padden in Bellingham after a tree fell on power lines during high winds, Sunday afternoon, March 13, 2016.

Sunday’s storm was the second in less than a week to pound Whatcom County with fierce winds. The strongest gusts recorded — 68 mph in Sandy Point, 66 mph at Cherry Point — happened between 3:30 and 5:30 p.m. Winds quickly tapered off in the evening.

A windstorm early Thursday, March 10, was even stronger, with peak gusts of 80 mph northeast of Bellingham and 81 mph in Edgemoor, according to the Twitter account for Bellingham Weather.

That storm caused significantly more power outages across Whatcom County. Sunday’s storm was less powerful, and a lot of the weakened trees already went down in the first one so there likely were fewer limbs and trees to fall on Sunday.

People can track power outages on the outage map or follow @PSEtalk on Twitter for updates.

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