High winds cause chaos in San Francisco
Almost 15,000 lose power; rig flips on San Mateo-Hayward Bridge
The Associated Press, April 15, 2009
SAN FRANCISCO - High winds in the San Francisco Bay Area Tuesday caused trees to fall, residents to lose power and a big rig to overturn on the San Mateo-Hayward Bridge.
Nearly 15,000 Pacific Gas and Electric Co. customers in the Bay Area were without power Tuesday evening, according to PG&E spokesman J.D. Guidi. The company was hoping to restore power to all the customers by Tuesday night or early Wednesday morning, Guidi said.
"The majority of these are wind-related outages," he said.
Meanwhile, winds caused a big rig to flip over on the San Mateo-Hayward Bridge around 5:35 p.m. Tuesday, said California Highway Patrol spokeswoman Nicole Pacheco. No one was injured, but the truck blocked westbound lanes and brought rush hour traffic to a halt.
About a half hour after the truck overturned, wind pushed a fishing boat that had lost power into the San Mateo-Hayward Bridge. The U.S. Coast Guard had already rescued two people aboard the 70-foot boat when it hit the span, said Petty Officer Erik Swanson.
A third person on board climbed onto the bridge and was also rescued, Swanson said.
He said investigators were at the scene late Tuesday to determine whether any oil had leaked from the boat. Authorities were also trying to determine whether the bridge suffered any damage, the Coast Guard said in a release.
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