Gusts reach 97 mph near Oregon coastal town

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PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — A storm gusting through Oregon has residents on edge as winds reached nearly 100 mph at a mountain near one coastal town.

By Tuesday morning, wind had blown down trees, blocking a highway in the central Willamette Valley, one school district announced it would open two hours late because of power outages and the Coast Guard closed the Columbia River bar entrance near Astoria, Ore., due to hazardous conditions.

The National Weather Service is predicting that the storm could be the strongest since a series of storms hit the north Oregon coast and southwest Washington in December 2007.

Stormy conditions are expected to hold until Wednesday morning.

The weather service reported wind gusts as high as 97 mph on Mount Hebo, about 12 miles inland from the coast.