Winds knock down trees, knock out power in Dolores

Wednesday, July 11, 2018 9:36 PM
A large spruce tree was blown over by high winds Saturday evening in Dolores. The winds blew other trees into power lines, knocking out electricity in the area for one to three hours.
The spruce tree blew over onto a car at the Arie Apartments on Central Avenue in Dolores.

High winds Saturday evening knocked down power lines in Dolores, leaving 1,400 people without electricity for up to three hours.

Gusts reaching 50 mph ripped off branches and knocked down trees throughout town.

A large evergreen at the Arie Apartments on Central Avenue toppled over onto parked vehicles. Trees were blown down across streets and the River Trail and fell in residents’ yards.

There were no reported injuries.

An Empire Electric spokesperson said power lines were damaged from windblown trees and limbs in three areas in the Dolores area. Crews were immediately dispatched to repair them.

East of Dolores, power was knocked out from 7:50 p.m. to 10:53 p.m. In town, power was lost from 8:19 p.m. to 9:55 p.m., and another circuit in town lost power from 8:40 p.m. to 10:52 p.m.

Local meteorologist Jim Andrus said the high winds were caused by a collapsed thunder cloud that lost its warm updraft.

“After the sun went down, the air cooled, causing strong outflows down valley as the storm cloud collapsed,” he said. “It’s been a long time since we have seen gusts that strong.”