Wild, wet weather caps record month

Staff and wire reportsOctober 1, 2013 

The storms that rumbled through last weekend not only topped the more than 30-year-old records, they buried them in their wake.


This was shaping to be the wettest September on record in Olympia.

The storms that rumbled through this weekend not only topped the more than 30-year-old records, they buried them in their wake.

The National Weather Service on Monday evening had recorded 9.14 inches of rain in Olympia for the month of September — easily besting the record of 7.59 inches set in 1978.

Heavy Monday rains tore down the Sea-Tac International Airport record of 5.95 inches of rain set in 1978. The National Weather Service recorded 6.16 inches as of Monday evening after coming into the day at 5.6.

Record weekend rains were followed by high winds Sunday night and Monday morning in Washington, with a tornado touching down in Frederickson, southeast of Tacoma.

The lower reaches of the Chehalis River in Thurston County were under flood watch Monday night.

Puget Sound Energy reported it had about 12,000 customers out of service about midnight Sunday, mainly in Skagit, Thurston and Kitsap counties.

Power was restored to all but 350 customers in Thurston County by 8:30 a.m. Monday, PSE said.

The National Weather Service said winds on the coast Sunday hit 67 mph at Destruction Island, 51 mph at Hoquiam and 43 mph at Friday Harbor.

On Monday morning, a funnel cloud damaged buildings and cars in Frederickson, and Orting schools shut down because of power outages.

A storm cell that moved through Frederickson about 7:20 a.m. Monday caused minor damage to one building at Boeing’s plant there and blew out windows in two dozen cars in the plant’s parking lot, said Boeing spokesman Doug Alder.

“Fortunately no one was injured by whatever passed through,” Alder said.

The National Weather Service confirmed it was a tornado.

Central Pierce Fire Assistant Chief Ed Hrivnak said crews evacuated another building at 190th Street and Canyon Road prior to the winds ripping a swath several hundred feet wide off the roof. No injuries were reported.

In addition, several people reported seeing rail cars toppled by the funnel cloud about 7:45 a.m.

The Weather Service on Monday morning issued a winter storm warning for the Cascades, saying drivers should be prepared for wintry conditions.

By Tuesday, 10 to 20 inches of snow could fall above 4,000 feet, with Stevens Pass seeing about 5 inches by Tuesday morning.

The heaviest snow is expected at Mount Rainier and Mount Baker.

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