‘A kick in the gut’: Abnormal winds wreak havoc on North County brewery

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SAN DIEGO – Strong gusts of Santa Ana winds recently wreaked havoc on a North County brewery.

Video captured by Abnormal Beer Co. in Rancho Bernardo shows blustery winds lift the brewery’s 40×40 foot outdoor dining tent, ripping it from its sandbag moorings before depositing it in a neighboring parking lot.

“The structure is toast — that’s done,” said Matt DeLoach, the brewery’s president and CEO.

Part of San Diego County including the mountains and inland valleys are under a High Wind Watch through Friday morning. Damaging northeast winds between 20 to 40 mph with gusts up to 60 mph were in the forecast with the potential to blow down trees and power lines, according to the National Weather Service.

In anticipation of high winds and arid conditions, SDG&E shut off power to 70,613 addresses in particularly at-risk inland communities due to combustion hazards posed by transmission equipment.

As of 9:15 p.m. Thursday, improving weather allowed SDG&E to reduce that number to 40,327, though another 54,827 customers remain on notice for potential power-downs, the utility reported.

DeLoach said he lost about $2,500 in actual costs. But the loss of 20 outdoor dining seats — particularly as restaurants, breweries and wineries are limited with San Diego County in California’s purple reopening tier — is the real financial hardship.

“Kinda feels like we are building to the grand finale of this show that has been 2020,” DeLoach said. “So yeah, it’s a kick in the gut, especially because we are facing some additional measures coming down the pipeline.”

He adds, “It’s rough, but we are stubborn.”

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