By Gordon Lambie
Strong winds blowing across southwestern Quebec caused significant power outages on Saturday evening.
According to Hydro-Quebec there were approximately 70,000 customers without power across the province as of 7 p.m. with many of the outages being caused by fallen branches or other situations of vegetation coming into contact with the power grid following gusts.
The most affected regions at the peak of the outages were the Montérégie, Montreal and the Laurentians, although thousands founds themselves in the dark in the Estrie Region as well.
In Lennoxville an outage associated with equipment failure started at 6:12 pm and lasted well into the night.
By 11 p.m. the total number of customers without power had decreased to 46,482, over 20,000 of whom were in the Estrie and Monteregie. Some 16,000 were still facing outages by Sunday morning, though by that point the issues were limited to small pockets, mainly in more rural areas. Most of these were resolved over the course of the day.
Hydro Quebec recommends keeping an emergency kit at home with a flashlight, spare batteries, first-aid supplies, supplies for people with special needs, a battery-powered radio or portable charger, warm blankets, non-perishable food, a list of important telephone numbers, and games, books or other pastimes to entertain everyone until service is restored. Other tips and recommendations are listed on the power utility’s website: