97 MPH Winds Slam Into Los Angeles

On Wednesday evening several cities in southern California reported power outages and downed trees due to overwhelming winds that pummeled the Los Angeles area.

The strong and gusty northeast Santa Ana winds were some of the strongest winds to hit the Los Angeles-area in years and 75,000 customers were left without power, according to power company officials.

A wind gust as strong as 97 mph was felt in the powerful Santa Ana windstorm.

At least 23 flights into the Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) were diverted and delayed due to the windstorm and a fallen tree crushed a Pasadena gas station.

At LAX, lights were knocked out in terminals and travelers were forced to use their cell phones to light their way through the airport terminals.

The windstorm is expected to continue through Friday and subside by Friday afternoon as the winds move eastward.

AccuWeather meteorologist Ken Clark told USA Today the Los Angeles area was witnessing a “once-a-decade-type windstorm.”

People across the region have taken to social media sites such as Twitter to post pictures of downed trees and damages sustained by unusually strong winds.

Due to the sustained winds and low humidity brought on by the windstorm, the U.S. National Weather Service issued warnings that wildfires could breakout.

“A strong upper-level, low-pressure system is moving into the area today. This is beginning to generate strong and potentially damaging winds,” a National Weather Service warning message said.

The Weather Service also said that the winds would weaken Thursday afternoon, but would pick up again on Friday morning until they descend on an eastward path.

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