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And the mighty wind did blow around Lake Oswego

by: Vern Uyetake, Westlake-area resident Nancy Werncke examines the root ball of two large trees that came down in her backyard on Vermeer Drive last Thursday during a storm that blew through the area.

Weather woes plagued Lake Oswego last Thursday during one of the worst windstorms on record in the last decade.

As wind gusts ranged up to 70 and 80 mph, residents battled downed trees and power lines that snarled traffic throughout town. Lake Oswegans also reported damage to cars and homes, while at least two drivers reported weather-related crashes.

All told, police responded to about 40 reports during the nine-hour storm. City maintenance crews received an additional 57 calls for non-emergency issues.

A fallen tree that snapped three power poles and power lines on Boones Ferry Road at about 5 p.m. appeared to cause the worst problems, blackening the west end of town and halting traffic there for hours. All northbound lanes of the Boones Ferry Road were detoured until approximately 2:30 a.m. and power was out along most of the road during that time.

Other power outages were reported in areas of the Country Club, Mountain Park and First Addition neighborhoods and also on Pilkington Road.

Power in those areas was still out the following morning. Both the Lake Oswego Library and River Grove Elementary School were closed Friday.

Power was also lost at 10 major pump stations for sewers, which switched to generators but not before sewage overflowed in the Palisades area, on Cardinal Drive and in Foothills.

Throughout the night, police received mostly calls for tree-related incidents, with 26 relating to fallen trees and branches or small tree fires caused by power lines.

A blown power transformer on Edgecliff Terrace also ignited a fire. Low power lines dangled over a residence on Bonaire Avenue, in the street on McEwan Road and struck a passing car on Reese Road.

As motorists made their way through town, inoperable traffic signals made for long delays and downed branches made for uneasy travel. Trees blocked 12 roads across town. A downed tree branch high-centered a car on Mulligan Road. Another caused an accident between swerving vehicles at Macadam and Sweeney roads.

No major property damage was reported but fallen trees did damage three cars, one on Cervantes Circle, another on Kruse Oaks Boulevard and a third on Kokanee Court. On Cameo Court, a blowing tree pulled power lines and a meter from the side of a home.

All in all, however, one of the worst storms in 10 years of Pacific Northwest weather passed without major injuries or severe property damage.

Conditions in Lake Oswego were typical of those across Oregon and Washington, where the storm left a total of 1.5 million without power. Portland General Electric reported Wednesday afternoon that its crews restored power to the last 400 customers, most of them in the Rhodendron area.

Weather in other parts of the Northwest mainly caused damage to trees and related road closures. Roads spanning the Cascade and Coastal ranges were blocked in many places by downed trees. Some local flooding also occurred.