A wind advisory remains in effect until 7 p.m., with the National Weather Service forecasting winds of 20 to 30 mph and gusts of up to 40 mph for the Sacramento Valley.
Winds last night and early today caused power outages throughout the region, but both the Sacramento Utility District and Pacific Gas and Electric Co. reported that power had been restored to a majority of affected customers by mid-afternoon.
Linda Tucker, a spokesman for the city of Sacramento, said tree damage from winds over the past 24 hours was "not a record by any means." As of 3 p.m. today, she said, city crews had received 38 calls regarding tree issues. They reported that one tree needed to be removed because it lost half of its canopy. Only one case of a limb falling on a vehicle was reported.
Most calls involved downed limbs blocking streets or sidewalks, Tucker said.
Brittany McKannay, a PG&E spokeswoman, said that as of about 3:45 p.m., about 170 customers in the Sacramento and Marysville areas were without power. One of the largest outages in the region occurred about 8 a.m. in Davis and affected 3,100 customers after winds downed a power pole. By mid-afternoon, power had been restored to all but 63 of those customers.
Davis police reported the intersection of Pole Line Road and Covell Boulevard was closed about 10 a.m. and expected to remain closed to traffic most of the day while PG&E crews repaired power lines.
Sacramento Municipal Utility District customers were without electricity across a wide swath of the county at 10 a.m., including 245 customers in Orangevale and one in Florin. As of 4:30 p.m., SMUD reported 18 outages affecting 122 customers.
Some of the power failures were caused by circuit breakers tripping, which can happen when a short occurs as a result of power lines slapping together.
"Sometimes they re-close themselves," said SMUD spokesman Chris Capra. "When they don't, we have to send somebody out there to do it. Usually one person with a small boom truck pops that back in and it is ready to go."
Capra said the dry weather should forestall power poles from toppling or trees being uprooted.
Both SMUD and PG&E reported having a full complement of crews ready to deal with problems created by today's high winds.
"We are expecting wind gusts of 40-50 mph," Capra said. "Our lines can certainly withstand that."
Tucker of the city of Sacramento, said the city's urban forest has withstood strong winds fairly well over the past three or four years, since completion citywide tree pruning.
"With proactive pruning," she said, "we've kept the damage that could happen from events like this down to a minimum."