High wind warning in effect through Thursday afternoon

A map showing projected wind gusts issued Wednesday morning by the National Weather Service shows a peak forecast gust of 61 in the Ashland area during the wind warning period that lasts into Thursday afternoon, Jan. 5.
January 4, 2023

Winds of 35-45 mph with gusts to 65 expected in Ashland/Talent area

By Bert Etling, Ashland.news

Widespread power outages are expected Wednesday evening through Thursday, Jan. 5, the Jackson County Sheriff’s Office said in a news release issued Wednesday afternoon.

Travel is expected to be difficult, especially for high profile vehicles. Jackson County Roads Department responded to traffic hazard calls throughout the county for more than a dozen fallen trees and multiple downed power lines Wednesday. 

The department urges motorists to be on the lookout for fallen trees and warns to never attempt to move a downed power line or clear trees from the roadway around downed power lines. Anyone coming across a downed line can call the county dispatch non-emergency line at 541-776-7206 and report it.

The Medford office of the National Weather Service cautions that people should avoid being outside in forested areas and around trees and branches. If possible, people should remain in the lower levels of their home during a windstorm, and avoid windows. 

A worker in an orange vest cleans up shattered glass in front of the Ashland Safeway on Wednesday evening after high winds broke one of the large panes of glass on the front side of the store shortly before 7 p.m. Wednesday. No one was hurt. Ashland.news photo by Jordin Crow
Yellow pylons surround an area inside the Ashland Safeway on Wednesday evening after high winds broke one of the large panes of glass on the front side of the store shortly before 7 p.m. Wednesday. No one was hurt. Ashland.news photo by Jordin Crow

The NWS office has issued a high wind warning for South County, including the area around Ashland and Talent, effective until 4 p.m. Thursday. The high wind warning is for south winds 35 to 45 mph with gusts up to 65 mph expected.

For the rest of the county there is a wind advisory in effect until 4 p.m. Thursday with south winds 25 to 35 with gusts up to 50 mph expected. 

According to an NWS discussion, the heavy weather moving through the area Wednesday and Thursday is part of a powerful hurricane force low pressure system located over the Eastern Pacific that’s sending a “plume of moisture and damaging winds into the West Coast beginning Wednesday night. The greatest impacts,” according to the summary, “which include damaging winds, excessive rainfall, and extremely heavy snow, is forecast to occur over much of California and into southern Oregon through Thursday.” 

The NWS weather forecast for Ashland calls for an 80% chance of rain Wednesday night into Thursday, falling to 30% Thursday night into Friday. Overnight lows are expected to be in the 30s, with daytime highs in the 40s.

For up-to-date weather information, go to weather.gov/mfr/.

Email Ashland.news Executive Editor Bert Etling at betling@ashland.news or call or text him at 541-631-1313.

Firefighters from Fire District No. 4 extinguished a small grass fire sparked by a powerline brought down by high winds near Trail on Wednesday afternoon. Jackson County Sheriff’s Office photo

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Bert Etling

Bert Etling

Bert Etling is the executive editor of Ashland.news. Email him at betling@ashland.news.

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