Big Wind Storm Predicted to Hit Anchorage During Morning Commute

The first big wind storm of the season is forecast to hit early Tuesday Morning.

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With lots of wet weather and the ground still unfrozen, the National Weather Service says Anchorage should be prepared for some downed trees and power outages.

Courtesy of the National Weather Service.
Courtesy of the National Weather Service.

Say one last goodbye to the golden leaves that have brightened Anchorage’s autumn. They’re about to be blown away, according to Shawn Baines, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Anchorage. He says it’s going to be very windy Tuesday.

“For those areas that typically get these really high winds, Turnagain Arm and higher elevations, we’re looking for gusts of 75-90 miles per hour, but we are expecting some of that wind, not nearly as strong, to get down to lower elevations of Anchorage – the lower hillside and parts of East Anchorage,” Baines said. “And we’re looking for gusts of 50 to 60 miles per hour there.”

Sustained winds of 45-65 miles per hour are expected in the Turnagain Arm and the Upper Hillside. The Lower Hillside, East Anchorage and Eagle River can expect sustained winds of 20-35 miles per hour. Winds will increase overnight and be at their height between 6 and 10 a.m.

With a wet August and September, Meteorologist Eddie Zingoni, also with the Anchorage office of the National Weather Service, says the wind has the potential to do some real damage.

“There’s a greater change during this storm to see uprooted trees which increases the chance that one could knock out the power or be across the road in the morning, during the morning commute and could maybe cause an issue with that,” Zingoni said.

Zingoni says the winds are predicted to pick up just after midnight and the high wind warning will remain in effect until noon.

Forecasters say this storm won’t likely last as long as that one hit last September. That storm lasted for over 12 hours and knocked out power for about a week in some parts of the city.

A quarter to one half inch of rain is expected during this storm and minor flooding onto roadways is possible.

The National Weather Service has issued a high wind warning from 1 a.m. until noon Tuesday.

The Red Cross is urging Anchorage residents to be prepared.

Daysha Eaton is a contributor with the Alaska Public Radio Network.

Daysha Eaton holds a B.A. from Evergreen State College, and a M.A. from the University of Southern California. Daysha got her start in radio at Seattle public radio stations, KPLU and KUOW. Before coming to KBBI, she was the News Director at KYUK in Bethel. She has also worked as the Southcentral Reporter for KSKA in Anchorage.

Daysha's work has appeared on NPR's "Morning Edition" and "All Things Considered", PRI's "The World" and "National Native News". She's happy to take assignments, and to get news tips, which are best sent via email.

Daysha became a journalist because she believes in the power of storytelling. Stories connect us and they help us make sense of our world. They shed light on injustice and they comfort us in troubled times. She got into public broadcasting because it seems to fulfill the intention of the 4th Estate and to most effectively apply the freedom of the press granted to us through the Constitution. She feels that public radio has a special way of moving people emotionally through sound, taking them to remote places, introducing them to people they would not otherwise meet and compelling them to think about issues they might ordinarily overlook.

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