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Storm knocks out power to 29,000 homes in southern B.C.

B.C. Hydro crews worked into the early hours of Thursday morning to restore electricity to thousands of Metro Vancouver residents affected by a powerful wind and rain storm.

Strong gusts hit on Wednesday afternoon and the storm continued through the night, toppling trees and knocking down power lines.

Nearly 29,000 customers from Coquitlam, New Westminster and Surrey east through the Fraser Valley were still without power early Thursday morning but Hydro hoped to have most of the lights back on by 8 a.m.

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Wind or rain warnings remained posted for West and East Vancouver Island, the Sunshine Coast and Howe Sound early Thursday but gust of up to 70 kilometres per hour were expected to abate my mid-morning.

About 13,000 residents in the southern Interior also spent the night in dark with high winds blamed for the problems in Salmon Arm, Sicamous and Spallumcheen.

Power in some of those areas may not be restored until late Thursday afternoon while Hydro predicts a substation fault that blacked out more than 6,000 homes in Lake Country and Vernon would be repaired by breakfast.

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