Power outages, school closures as gusty winds hit Puget Sound

Gusty winds and heavy rain knocked out power to thousands of Puget Sound area residents overnight and Wednesday, and some schools were closed or were opening late due to power outages.

Four state ferry runs - the 8 a.m. and 9:30 a.m. sailings from Port Townsend and the 8:45 and 10:15 a.m. sailings from Coupeville - also were canceled because of high winds and rough seas.

Crews fanned out across the region to fix downed lines and blown transformers in several areas.

Puget Sound Energy says about 20,000 lost power in Pierce, Kitsap and Thurston counties. In Mason County, 2,700 homes went dark in the Tahuya area west of Belfair.

Seattle City Light reported about 5,000 customers were without electricity in northeast, west and south Seattle at the height of the storm. By 7 a.m., about 2,500 still had no power. Most outages were expected to be fixed by 9 a.m.

In Redmond, Emily Dickinson Elementary and Evergreen Middle schools were closed due to power outages. Stillwater Elementary in King County also was closed for the day due to weather-related issues.

In the Puyallup School District, Edgerton and Pope elementary schools lost power and are running two hours late as a result.

Blustery winds and heavy rain were blamed for the outages.

The wind gusted as high as 49 mph at Sea-Tac Airport. Other peak gusts around the area: 46 mph at Everett, 47 mph at Tacoma, 38 mph at Olympia and 47 mph at Bellingham.

About 1½ inches of rain fell in the Puget Sound area.

The rain and winds are expected to die down through Wednesday. More blustery winds and rain are expected Wednesday night and Thursday night.