BendStrong thunderstorms rumble through C.O., 10,000 in Bend lose power, 2 underpasses...

Strong thunderstorms rumble through C.O., 10,000 in Bend lose power, 2 underpasses flood, crews tackle fires

Strong thunderstorms rumble through C.O., 10,000 in Bend lose power, 2 underpasses flood, crews tackle fires
Jessica Stinson
Redmond had its share of Saturday’s lightning display
NE Bend lightning Cory Markland
Cory Markland
Lightning bolds streak across the NE Bend sky on Saturday evening
Eagle Crest lightning Larry Hayward 72
Larry Hayward
Colorful lightning show as seen Saturday from Eagle Crest
Bend lightning Kayla Ryan 72
Karla Ryan
There was plenty of lightning to witness around Bend on Saturday evening
Lightning Jordynn Cubero
Jordyn Cubero
A still from video catches a lightning bolt
Hail southern Bend Mikayla 72
Mikayla
Hail fell amid the storms in some areas, including southern Bend
Hail Valhalla Jennifer Gartz 72
Jennifer Gartz
Hail looked like snow in the Valhalla neighborhood
Awbrey Butte hail Julia Fuentes Scheppach
Julia Fuentes Scheppach
Awbrey Butte residents saw gumball-sized hail from storm that rolled though
Broken Top golf course hailstorm Diana R 74
Diana R.
Hailstorm brought a surreal scene at Broken Top Golf Course
Rainbow Gary Lynch
Gary Lynch
The storms were followed by a nice sunset in some areas

One blaze in Mill Creek Wilderness will be staffed with smokejumpers Sunday

BEND, Ore. (KTVZ) – Intense thunderstorms rumbled through Central Oregon Saturday afternoon and evening, bringing hundreds of lightning strikes, thunder, hail and sustained downpours, knocking out power to thousands in Bend, flooding two underpasses and sending area fire crews scrambling to put out numerous new fires at small sizes.

The National Weather Service said the strong thunderstorm was reported around 5:30 p.m. near Deschutes River Woods, moving northeast at 10 mph, carrying winds possibly gusting to 50 mph and nickel-sized hail.

Another strong thunderstorm was reported shortly before 3 p.m. over the southwest part of the Warm Springs Indian Reservation, about 20 miles east of Detroit.

Though the lightning and its dramatic Fourth of July sky show was coupled with heavy rain over a wide area, firefighters responded to 10 new “single-tree starts” due to lightning by 6:30 p.m., mostly on the Deschutes National Forest and Prineville District BLM east of Bend.

Forest Service spokeswoman Kassidy Kern said crews were still responding to a couple of new fires around 8:30 p.m. and that one in the Mill Creek Wilderness on the Ochoco National Forest will be staffed with smokejumpers on Sunday.

All were kept small, but “more smokes will likely pop up tomorrow (Sunday) with increased heat” and more lightning in the forecast, Kern said.

More than 10,500 Pacific Power customers lost power shortly before 6 p.m. due to an apparent storm-related cause, utility spokesman Drew Hanson said. About 1,000 got power back an hour later, as crews patrolled lines, and most 8,000 were restored around 7 p.m., with the rest by 7:30 p.m.

For the second time in recent weeks, Bend’s Greenwood and Franklin Avenue underpasses flooded from the heavy rainfall and were closed for Public Works crews’ cleanup, reopening about 9 p.m., police Communications Manager Sharon Miller said.

The post Strong thunderstorms rumble through C.O., 10,000 in Bend lose power, 2 underpasses flood, crews tackle fires appeared first on KTVZ.

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