Storm knocks out power, floods Anchor, delays Tusty

A storm with winds up to 100 mph roared through the Kenai Peninsula, knocking out power for Homer Electric Association customers from Seldovia to Soldotna, causing flooding on the Anchor River, tearing off a trailer roof and delaying the M/V Tustumena run to Kodiak. The National Weather Service issued an alert on Tuesday evening warning of east to southeast winds 50 to 60 mph, with gusts up to 75 mph, with the worst winds after midnight Wednesday. 

At 11:20 a.m. Wednesday, the storm also caused an ice-jam on the Anchor River, flooding the Old Sterling Highway near the bridge. Alaska State Troopers reported the road was impassable.

On East End Road near Crested Crane Street, a double-wide trailer lost its roof.

Power outages rippled throughout the HEA system, mainly caused by fallen trees. Late on Tuesday, 137 customers lost power in the Ohlson Mountain and Skyline Drive area. At 2:30 a.m. Wednesday, a tree fell on a line on Diamond Ridge, with 495 meters losing power. Crews restored power by 3 a.m. Power also went out in Seldovia. Port Graham and Nanwalek switched to power from the Port Graham generator.

By 10:30 a.m. Wednesday, all but 33 meters on Ohlson Mountain had power. Power was still out from Tutka Bay to Seldovia, affecting 365 meters. Seldovia locals reported winds reached 100 mph and several trees were down in the area. HEA planned to send crews out on Wednesday. HEA customers on the upper Kenai Peninsula also lost power, with outages in Sterling and Soldotna. 

High wind also delayed a scheduled run of the M/V Tustumena to Kodiak on Tuesday. The Alaska Marine Highway System canceled that trip, but continued ferry service between Homer and Seldovia. The Tustumena is scheduled to leave Homer for Kodiak at 10 p.m. Thursday.

Michael Armstrong can be reached at