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Powerful winds bring Metro Vancouver flooding, park closures and ferry cancellations

Click to play video: 'More extreme weather wreaks havoc in Metro Vancouver' More extreme weather wreaks havoc in Metro Vancouver
A combination of a king tide and high winds has left a trail of damage across Metro Vancouver. Paul Johnson reports – Jan 7, 2022

Heavy winds knocked out power to tens of thousands of people on B.C.’s South Coast on Friday, flooding and damaging coastal areas and prompting ferry sailing cancellations.

Environment Canada wind warnings were in effect for Metro Vancouver, the Fraser Valley and the Greater Victoria area, with winds of 70 km/h gusting to 90 km/h forecast.

Read more: Freezing rain, winter storm leaves thousands without power on B.C.’s South Coast

Stanley Park and parts of the seawall around Sunset Beach in Vancouver were also closed due to dangerous waves and high water from the king tide.

Images from the area showed significant damage to the Stanley Park seawall.

A portion of the Stanley Park seawall is seen badly damaged on Friday. Courtesy: Bernie Steininger

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In Kitsilano, the Jericho Pier — which was already closed due to previous damage — appeared to have suffered more significant impacts from the storm.

Vancouver park commissioner Tricia Barker reported that a seaside path near the Kitsilano Yacht Club had also been seriously damaged.

In West Vancouver, Ambleside Park was closed due to a combination of powerful winds and shoreline flooding from a king tide.

A district spokesperson said crews had deployed tiger dams to protect the Music Box and Silk Purse Art Centre in the park, and expected a significant debris mess. Several vehicles were trapped in a flooded parking lot.

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Click to play video: 'King tide and strong winds damaging sections of seawall around Metro Vancouver' King tide and strong winds damaging sections of seawall around Metro Vancouver
King tide and strong winds damaging sections of seawall around Metro Vancouver – Jan 7, 2022

The Metro Vancouver Regional District closed Iona Beach Regional Park in Richmond after the storm surge and king tide caused erosion affecting the road in and out of the area.

North Vancouver closed access ot the Burrard Dry Dock and St. Roch due to high winds and waves, while Lynn Canyon Park was closed due to high winds, heavy snow and downed trees.

BC Ferries said it had to cancel multiple sailings on major southern routes, including Tsawwassen to Swartz Bay, Tsawwassen to Duke Point, Horseshoe Bay to Departure Pay, Powell River to Little River, and Westview to Blubber Bay.

You can find an up-to-date list of ferry delays and cancellations here.

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