Portland, OR

Thursday in Portland: Thousands without power as winter storm moves into Portland area

Emily Scarvie

Photo by(Jonathan Ferrey/Getty Images)

By Emily Scarvie

(PORTLAND, Ore.) Hello Portlanders! It's Thursday, Dec. 22 - Here's your daily round up of all the news happening in the City of Roses.

1. Thousands without power as winter storm moves into Portland area

Thousands in the Portland metro area woke up without power on Thursday as extreme cold temperatures and wind moved into the region. Portland General Electric reported 124 active power outages affecting more than 9,200 people and Pacific Power reported 33 outages affecting around 500 households as of 10 a.m.

Conditions are expected to worsen with freezing rain and ice in the forecast beginning Thursday into early Saturday.

2. ODOT urging drivers to stay off the roads during extreme cold temperatures

As extreme cold temperatures hit the Portland area on Thursday, officials are urging drivers to limit all non-essential travel. The Oregon Department of Transportation has already begun preparing roads for ice, focusing on de-icing all major highways in the region.

Despite the winter storm only being forecast to last several days in the valley, ODOT says it’s expecting issues in the Gorge through next week. Crews will reportedly be monitoring Interstate 84 for any major safety issues. Depending on conditions, the interstate may be closed.

3. Therapy dogs help travelers de-stress at PDX during holiday travel season

It’s a busy time at Portland International Airport as holiday travel picks up, but on Wednesday, several travelers got an opportunity to de-stress when some furry friends stopped by. DoveLewis and their Portland Area Canine Therapy Teams stopped at PDX to help ease the minds of travelers and airport staff during what can be a stressful week. PACTT is the only canine therapy program certified to visit the airport.

The team is made up of committed handlers and career-change or retired guide dogs. According to PACTT, canine-assisted therapy promotes physical healing by reducing anxiety, stress, fatigue and depression. The stop at PDX is one of many that PACTT will make during the holiday season. They’ll also stop by at-risk youth facilities, county courts, transitional houses, Portland police and OHSU.

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