Severe weather expected to storm Cowichan Valley this weekend

The Cowichan Valley and much of Vancouver Island may experience the windiest weather it has seen in several years this weekend

The Cowichan Valley and much of Vancouver Island may experience the windiest weather it has seen in several years this weekend, according to Environment Canada.

The region is currently experiencing a series of strong fall storms that are taking aim at much of B.C. which caused Environment Canada to issue a special weather statement earlier this week.

Meteorologist Armel Castellan said that, after the first pulse of rain and wind that has swept through the region over the last two days, the remnants of powerful Typhoon Songda is expected to arrive on Saturday.

“If it materializes as forecast, the weather over the weekend in the Valley and on the Island will be something to behold,” Castellan said.

“While it still has yet to be determined, we could see wind gusts of up to 100 kilometres per hour and up to 100 millimetres of rain over the weekend in the Valley, and possibly stronger winds and more rain in more exposed areas.”

Castellan said that power outages should be expected as the wind blows branches and trees that were weakened during the drought this past summer onto power lines. Flooding from the heavy rains could pose problems as well in low-lying areas.

“If people had a lot of leaves and other debris in their gutters from the wind storm last weekend, they will probably see a lot more after this weekend,” Castellan said.

Castellan said the forecast is not expected to improve much in the coming week either, with “unsettled conditions” forecast to continue, although the winds and rain are not expected to be as extreme as this weekend.

Power was knocked out to thousands of homes and businesses in the Cowichan Valley and southern Vancouver Island last weekend as a storm packing wind gusts of more than 90 kilometres an hour blasted through the area.

BC Hydro officials warned at the time that people should have flashlights, radios and fresh batteries to operate them readily available in the event of future power outages.