Thousands in the Cowichan Valley and the south Island were still without power as of Tuesday morning after an unexpected snowstorm hit the area on Monday, with heavy snow cracking off tree branches and taking down power lines. Pictured is a vehicle in Duncan after being struck by falling branches. (Robert Barron/Citizen)

Thousands in the Cowichan Valley and the south Island were still without power as of Tuesday morning after an unexpected snowstorm hit the area on Monday, with heavy snow cracking off tree branches and taking down power lines. Pictured is a vehicle in Duncan after being struck by falling branches. (Robert Barron/Citizen)

UPDATED: Thousands still without power in Cowichan after Monday snowstorm

BC Hydro crews working around the clock to repair damage

BC Hydro crews are working hard to restore power to the approximately 13,600 customers on south Vancouver Island and the Gulf Islands that lost power during Monday’s unexpected snow storm, but some may remain in the dark until tomorrow.

Most of those without power on the south Island as of 9:30 a.m. Tuesday were primarily located in Duncan, Victoria and Salt Spring Island, the hardest hit area on the Island.

The north Island also had 1,772 customers without power as of Tuesday morning, while about 24,500 in the Lower Mainland primarily in Maple Ridge, Mission and Surrey, were also in the dark.

Yesterday’s heavy, wet snow snowfall added weight to branches and trees, which caused them to break and come into contact with BC Hydro’s electrical equipment.

RELATED STORY: THOUSANDS WITHOUT POWER AS SNOW BLANKETS COWICHAN

As a result, all available BC Hydro crews and contractor crews will continue to work around the clock repairing the extensive damage until power is restored.

BC Hydro spokesman Ted Olynyk said the Crown corporation understands that outages are disruptive and it thanks its customers for their patience as crews work to repair the damage and restore power.

He said the storm created an ugly mix of conditions for work crews.

“We like to move quickly in the hardest hit areas, but a lot of trees and branches came down across roads, snarling traffic and delaying work crews that were coming in to help from Victoria and other parts of the Island,” Olynyk said.

“We hope to have the power back for almost all our customers who are still without power as of tonight, but some may have to wait until tomorrow due to damage to their service lines, which are the lines that are connected to people’s homes, or other reasons. Everyone is expected to have their power back by tomorrow at the latest.”

As repair work continues, BC Hydro will provide updated estimates for power restoration as they become available at bchydro.com/outages.

The Cowichan Valley was the hardest hit area on Vancouver Island when it came to power outages, with multiple calls beginning to come in yesterday morning, continuing throughout the afternoon. At the height of the outages yesterday almost 14,000 people in Cowichan were without power from the Malahat to Ladysmith to Youbou.

News and Weather

Just Posted

Egg producers in B.C. aren’t obligated to reveal their production sites. (Sarah Simpson/Citizen)
Officials say there’s not enough Vancouver Island eggs to meet demand

BC Egg Marketing Board doesn’t regulate labelling, supply needed from off-Island

A Courtenay resident labours to remove the snow build-up from around her car in February 2019. The area may see snow throughout the coming weekend. Black Press file photo
Snow, winter might not be done with Vancouver Island quite yet

Flurries, snow and cold temps predicted for the weekend for mid-Island

New population estimates peg the population of Greater Victoria at 408,883 as of July 1, 2020. (Black Press Media file photo)
Population estimates peg Greater Victoria’s population at 408,883

New estimates show regional population grew by 1.35 per cent

The Salvation Army’s 2020 Christmas Kettle Campaign includes a new $5 tap feature for pandemic-friendly donations. (Devon Bidal/News Staff)
EDITORIAL: Alberni Valley steps up in time of need

There are a lot of ways the outside world interprets Port Alberni…

A female prisoner sent Langford police officers a thank-you card after she spent days in their custody. (Twitter/West Shore RCMP)
Woman gives Victoria-area jail 4.5-star review in handwritten card to police after arrest

‘We don’t often get thank you cards from people who stay with us, but this was sure nice to see’: RCMP

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry prepares a daily update on the coronavirus pandemic, April 21, 2020. (B.C. Government)
B.C. adjusts COVID-19 vaccine rollout for delivery slowdown

Daily cases decline over weekend, 31 more deaths

The site of the former Arrowview Hotel, on Second Avenue and Athol Street, as of Jan. 14, 2020. (ELENA RARDON / ALBERNI VALLEY NEWS)
Port Alberni pressures Arrowview Hotel owner for final cleanup

Demolition finished in June 2020 but site still full of construction material

A rainbow graces the departure of CCGS John Cabot as it leaves Victoria Jan. 7. (Canadian Coast Guard/Facebook)
Follow a coast guard ship’s trip from Victoria to Halifax, through Panama Canal

Canadian Coast Guard Ship John Cabot left for St. Johns on Jan. 7

Curling season is over at the Parksville Curling Club and Qualicum Beach Curling Club. (PQB News file photo)
COVID-19: Parksville and Qualicum Beach curling clubs forced to end season

Restrictions impact financial sustainability of both operations

Jorie Benjamin does a modern dance performance to ‘La Vie en rose’ by Édith Piaf, Louis Gugliemi and Marguerite Monnot, choreographed by Elise Sampson during the Cowichan Music Festival’s Highlights Concert at the Cowichan Performing Arts Centre on March 1, 2020. (Kevin Rothbauer/Citizen)
Cowichan Music Festival cancelled for 2021

The festival had already been limited to solo performances only for 2021

A Trail man has a lucky tin for a keepsake after it saved him from a stabbing last week. File photo
Small tin in Kootenay man’s jacket pocket saved him from stabbing: RCMP

The man was uninjured thanks to a tin in his jacket

Nurses collect samples from a patient in a COVID suspect room in the COVID-19 intensive care unit at St. Paul’s hospital in downtown Vancouver, Tuesday, April 21, 2020. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward)
5 British Columbians under 20 years old battled COVID-19 in ICU in recent weeks

Overall hospitalizations have fallen but young people battling the virus in hospital has increased

NEW CUTLINE Pacific FC fans fill the stands during a game at the former Westhills Stadium
 Starlight Developments has purchased the naming rights from the City of Langford for the next 10 years.(Gazette file photo)

Pacific FC slid into third place in the league after defeating FC Edmonton 1-0 at Westhills Stadium on Saturday. (Shalu Mehta/News Staff)
Langford sells stadium naming rights for $500,000 to Starlight Developments

10-year sponsorship deal largest in the history of Langford, says mayor

Canada released proposed regulations Jan. 2 for the fisheries minister to maintain Canada’s major fish stocks at sustainable levels and recover those at risk. (File photo)
New laws would cement DFO accountability to depleted fish stocks

Three B.C. salmon stocks first in line for priority attention under proposed regulations

Most Read