• WEATHER ALERT Severe Thunderstorm Warning

Peninsula coast battered by heavy winds

December 25, 2008 9:03:10 PM PST
Kevin Kantner lives on Verona Avenue in Pacifica. His home was one of thousands along the San Mateo County coast that lost power for most of the day Thursday.

"On this whole side of the street right here, all without power, power lines down; it's madness," Kanter said.

The weather was unpredictable in the morning; sudden heavy downpours, some hail and fierce gusting winds lasting sometimes no longer than a couple of minutes.

But the nasty weather cut a large swath, especially along the coast.

Surfers had a great time; Thursday morning the weather service issued a surf advisory saying swells were likely to reach 24 feet.

Trees and power lines fell like dominoes.

Firefighters warned residents in Kantner's neighborhood about those downed lines, they could be "hot".

"Stay inside, call 911 and we'll come out, assess the hazard and take care of it for you," North County Fire District Battalion Chief Bob Trapp said.

In Pacifica and Daly City, about 1,200 Pacific Gas and Electric customers lost power for most of the day, and in Moss Beach about the same number had no electricity.

Even gas stations were forced to close because there was no power to run the pumps.

While in Redwood City, hundreds spent most of the day in the dark.

"This has been since 3:00 this morning," resident Jerry Morissette said.

That is about the time when the power went out in Morissette's home in a South San Francisco trailer park.

Many of the residents of the park are seniors on fixed incomes.

Morisette is a veteran with health problems who lives alone. His only diversion is television, which he could not see Thursday.

"Depression is a real bad thing during Christmas time because I have no family, all of them passed away," Morissette said.


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