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Southern Oregon/Northern California brace for high winds this week

Strong wind during Wednesday's storm has knocked down power lines in the region.
Jackson County Sheriff's Office
Strong wind during Wednesday's storm has knocked down power lines in the region.

The storm on Wednesday and Thursday is just the latest in a series of storms that have recently battered the region.

High wind warnings have been issued in Southern Oregon, and California Governor Gavin Newsom has declared a state of emergency. Winter storm warnings have been issued across Northern California, and the storm will bring very dangerous avalanche conditions to Mount Shasta.

Monica Ward, Emergency Management Director in Curry County on the Southern Oregon coast, is especially worried about the impacts of this storm given that the region has been hit by so many storms in recent weeks.

"We are worried about the wind and the rain," Ward said, "because we've gotten hit with back to back storms. So not only do we have the debris from the previous storms, but you've got to think that these branches and the trees, all the vegetation, is already weakened and beaten down from the previous storms. So my concern is that we're going to see power outages and and a lot more debris ..."

Ward encourages residents to secure any loose items.

Power outages were reported across Southern Oregon on Wednesday, and residents are encouraged to have an emergency kit prepared in case of power outages.

Ward said access to the port at Port Orford will be restricted on Thursday as the area faces ocean swells up to 20 feet.

"We are actually preparing for the worst of it for tomorrow, which is the really large swells that will be coming in that will impact our beaches and the port," Ward said. "Just the location of the port and the way that's sitting on the coastline, those swells are actually going to be able to come in actually get to the port."

She said they’re trying to prevent damage to boats and make sure visitors are safe.

Jane Vaughan is a regional reporter for Jefferson Public Radio. Jane began her journalism career as a reporter for a community newspaper in Portland, Maine. She's been a producer at New Hampshire Public Radio and worked on WNYC's On The Media.