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High Winds, Heavy Rain Knock Out Power in Oregon, Washington

Iris Bicksler

High winds and heavy rains knocked out power to 17,000 people in northwestern Oregon, and winter warnings went into effect in western Washington.

Pacific Gas and Electric says it's trying to restore power on Tuesday in Portland and surrounding areas amid rainfall and wind gusts.

Another utility, Pacific Power, says some 3,700 homes are without power on the southern Oregon coast.

In Washington, Puget Sound Energy says that about 3,400 customers on Tuesday are starting the day without power.

The National Weather Service says it measured wind gusts along the coast at 62 mph. Lowlands will continue getting soaking rain that will turn to snow in the mountains.

Matthew Cullen is with the NWS in Portland. He says an "atmospheric river" is responsible for the 1-3 inches of rain.

Cullen: “It’s a very narrow band, generally anywhere from 50 to 75 miles wide. Where there’s very efficient transport of moisture all the way from the tropics. And that very high moisture content materializes in the form of very heavy rain fall for a period of time. So wherever that band sets up, that’s where the heaviest rain will be.”

Cullen says widespread flooding is not expected. That’s because rivers are particularly low for this time of the year. But, drivers should be on the look-out for pooling water on neighborhood streets.

Born and raised in Eugene, Anni started at KLCC in 2000 as a reporter and co-host of Northwest Passage. After graduating from the University of Oregon, Anni moved to New York City. She worked in education for several years before returning to her true love, journalism. Anni co-founded and co-hosted Dailysonic, a narrative-based news podcast. She interned at WNYC's On The Media, then becoming WNYC's assistant producer of Morning Edition.