Power restored after Tropical Storm Hilary caused outages, strong winds in Yuma

Strong winds knocked down trees and powerlines, leaving around 3,000 people in the Yuma area without electricity at the height of the storm.
Published: Aug. 20, 2023 at 12:54 PM MST|Updated: Aug. 21, 2023 at 6:38 AM MST
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YUMA, AZ (3TV/CBS 5) — Power has been restored for thousands in Yuma after Tropical Storm Hilary made landfall on Sunday. Strong winds knocked down trees and powerlines, leaving around 3,000 people in the Yuma area without electricity at the height of the storm, according to APS.

A downed power pole also caused a fire at a mobile home. “In these high winds, one small spark and you got a big fire on your hands,” said Chief Jeff Woodruff with Rural Metro Yuma Fire. In Yuma, winds have been reported to be over 60 mph, causing reduced visibility from the blowing dust. Some parts of Arizona are also expecting heavy thunderstorms and severe winds.

In the West Valley, approximately 1,043 people were without power in Litchfield Park. APS says the outage was caused by weather and is likely wind-related. The outage affected those who live near Northern Avenue to Camelback Road and Perryville Road to Cotton Lane. Power was restored around 9 p.m. In the East Valley, a tree branch reportedly fell onto a Tempe apartment due to gusty winds from the storm.

Around 11 a.m., Hilary made landfall along Mexico’s Baja Coast, and Severe Thunderstorm Warnings were placed in effect for California cities near the Yuma border. Most of the storm is expected to hit western Arizona, including Yuma and Lake Havasu.

According to the National Weather Service Phoenix, severe thunderstorms will be possible, with a risk of winds and isolated tornadoes in southwest Arizona and California. On Sunday morning, the Phoenix area saw cool temperatures and little, isolated showers. In addition to Hilary’s impact, parts of Mohave County are being evacuated due to flooding risks. A “GO” evacuation order has been issued for the Temple Bar and Willow Beach areas of Lake Mead National Park. The National Park Service is recommending everyone in the area evacuate to higher elevations.

Forecasters expect Hilary to make history as the first tropical storm to hit Southern California in 84 years, bringing flash floods, mudslides, isolated tornadoes, high winds and power outages. The storm had weakened from a Category 4 hurricane to a tropical storm. Hilary hit the coast about 150 miles south of Ensenada, Mexico. The storm has already caused flooding along the length of the Baja peninsula, and torrential rains threatened mudslide-prone Tijuana, where improvised houses cling to hillsides just south of the U.S. border.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.


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