Wind up, tree down

A tree felled by wind Tuesday night is attended to by workers with Wright’s Tree Services at the corner of Whitman Street and Catherine Street on Wednesday morning.

By Walla Walla Union-Bulletin

Walla Walla saw wind gusts up to 70 miles Wednesday at around 12:53 a.m., according to a report from National Weather Service’s Pendleton office.

Power failures caused by wind damage affected the area, starting in Walla Walla as early as 5:15 p.m. on Tuesday around Whitman College.

That failure affected 1,900 Pacific Power customers, according to company spokesman Tom Gauntt.

Around 7:45 p.m., power was restored for 590 customers and, as of 1 a.m., just five customers were without power, Gauntt said.

In north Touchet and Dayton areas, power failures began at about 3:30 a.m. Wednesday. Around 440 customers were still without power as of about 8 a.m. Wednesday, said Doug Case, manager of marketing and member services for Columbia Rural Electric Association.

In Milton-Freewater, some 40 customers were without power after the wind apparently sheared off a power pole on the upper end of South Fork of the Walla Walla River just outside of town.

City Manager Linda Hall said the city electric crew got the call out at about 5:30 a.m. and anticipated having power back online by 10 a.m.

With wind speeds now dropping, the remainder of Wednesday is forecast to be mostly sunny with high temperatures in the low to mid-50s, said Jim Smith, a program leader for National Weather Service.

Sheila Hagar can be reached at or 509-526-8322.