Powerful wind storm cuts power to hundreds of thousands in Western Washington

SEATTLE -- Strong wind gusts, approaching 60 mph in some areas, toppled trees and took down power lines on Sunday morning.

In Seattle, more than 50,000 customers were in the dark by 2:30 a.m. according to Seattle City Light.

By afternoon, crews were still working to restore power for roughly 6,000 City Light customers.

Outages ballooned in cities to the south of Seattle, and on the Eastside, where Puget Sound Energy's outage map showed a combined total of nearly 220,000 customers affected early on.

The number of outages affecting PSE customers was reduced to 160,000 by 2 p.m.

South King County cities like Auburn, Federal Way and Des Moines all reported significant numbers of downed trees and wires, and emergency crews urged drivers to be cautious in the aftermath of the storm.

In Bellevue, downed trees and dangling wires closed a number of streets and transportation crews advised repairs could take several hours.

A similar scene in Pierce County: at the peak of the storm, Tacoma Public Utilities reported 20,000 customers without power after a large tree knocked out a substation in Graham.

By 8 a.m. progress was being made in restoring power for some, but getting the substation fully back online may not happen until Sunday night, according to TPU.

Thousands of outages were also reported in Mason County, Thurston County and Grays Harbor County, but utility officials were reporting significant progress later in the morning.

Widespread outages also caused delays for some travelers at Sea-Tac Airport, after Alaska Airlines lost power in their operations center.

The company posted on social media that several flights were impacted Sunday morning.

The National Weather Service says winds peaked in most areas by 4:20 a.m.

Gusts hit 60 mph in South King County and near the coast, according to NWS data.

A High Wind Warning for the Central Puget Sound area, the coast and San Juan County expired at 10 a.m. Sunday.

NWS meteorologists expect the next storm system to arrive Tuesday into Wednesday, bringing rain, breezy periods and snow on the passes .

Monday is expected to be dry, but overnight temperatures will dip into the 30s for many.

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