Winds cause major headaches for city crews
by Nick Rappley | Patterson Irrigator
Apr 08, 2013 | 5586 views | 1 1 comments | 12 12 recommendations | email to a friend | print
A city of Patterson public works crew responds to a downed tree near Seventh Street and West Las Palmas Avenue on Monday, April 8, just minutes before another tree collapsed near Sixth Street about a block away. Downed trees kept city public works crews busy throughout the day Monday, April 8, as local residents contended with wind gusts of up to 35 mph.--Photo by Jonathan Partridge/Patterson Irrigator
A city of Patterson public works crew responds to a downed tree near Seventh Street and West Las Palmas Avenue on Monday, April 8, just minutes before another tree collapsed near Sixth Street about a block away. Downed trees kept city public works crews busy throughout the day Monday, April 8, as local residents contended with wind gusts of up to 35 mph.--Photo by Jonathan Partridge/Patterson Irrigator
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City public works staff busily attends to a fallen tree limb on West Las Palmas Avenue near Seventh Street on Monday, April 8.--Photo by Jonathan Partridge/Patterson Irrigator
City public works staff busily attends to a fallen tree limb on West Las Palmas Avenue near Seventh Street on Monday, April 8.--Photo by Jonathan Partridge/Patterson Irrigator
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Patterson Fire Captain Chris Priola and Patterson High School Campus Supervisor Eddie Thompson discuss a fallen tree that trapped a 17-year-old female Patterson High School student Monday just after 9 a.m. Photo by Nick Rappley/Patterson Irrigator
Patterson Fire Captain Chris Priola and Patterson High School Campus Supervisor Eddie Thompson discuss a fallen tree that trapped a 17-year-old female Patterson High School student Monday just after 9 a.m. Photo by Nick Rappley/Patterson Irrigator
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East Las Palmas Avenue became a virtual minefield of palm fronds on Monday, April 8, as high winds knocked them to the ground.--Photo by Jonathan Partridge/Patterson Irrigator
East Las Palmas Avenue became a virtual minefield of palm fronds on Monday, April 8, as high winds knocked them to the ground.--Photo by Jonathan Partridge/Patterson Irrigator
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Blustery conditions wreaked havoc on the West Side on Monday, April 8, as falling branches blocked roads and injured a Patterson High School student.

Wind-related damage may also have caused a power outage in southern Patterson.

Fallen trees and limbs — mostly north of West Las Palmas Avenue near North Sixth and Seventh streets — kept city workers busy cleaning up the mess while the city endured gusts of up to 35 mph.

Workers were kept overtime to cover additional falling limbs as well as fallen palm fronds on East Las Palmas Avenue, said Robert Andrade, assistant public works director for the city of Patterson.

Emergency responders kept busy as well. Patterson firefighters responded to a 9:25 a.m. call at Patterson High School of a fallen pine tree with a student trapped underneath. Firefighters rescued 17-year-old Hannah Estrada within minutes, and she was taken to an area hospital by ambulance.

The girl was at home later in the day, recuperating from several scratches, a swollen knee and two fractured vertebrae, Estrada’s mother Lisa Jimenez said.

Estrada said the incident happened very quickly.

“I was going to get my backpack in a classroom,” she said by phone Tuesday, April 9. “I was walking and looking straight ahead when I heard a loud noise and all of a sudden I was on the ground.”

Winds uprooted the tree, which stood between the school’s science and home economics buildings.

Those buildings were vacated after the tree fell, and classes were moved to other locations while workers sought to remove at least two elms and three or four pines at the recommendation of a Patterson Joint Unified School District arborist, Patterson High School Principal Dave Stubbs said Monday, April 8.

City workers took down five fully grown mature trees along West Las Palmas Avenue between Sixth and Seventh streets and had to close the street in front of Las Palmas Elementary School at about 11 a.m. because the trees had fallen into the street, Andrade said. Another tree was removed Tuesday, April 9 near the corner of J and Fifth Streets. Fourteen others were trimmed because of downed branches.

The trees near Las Palmas School were very mature and prone to uproot or to have large falling limbs, Andrade said. Through there were several close calls with homes and vehicles, there appeared to be no damage, he said.

City public works crews also kept busy cleaning up East Las Palmas Avenue, as dozens of fronds fell from the city’s historic palm trees, littering the road both within city limits and in unincorporated Patterson.

Toppled tree limbs were not the only challenges facing local residents. About 70 homes along South Third and Fourth streets and South Del Puerto Avenue lost power Monday afternoon, possibly due to the high winds, according to Turlock Irrigation District spokesman Herb Smart Turlock Irrigation District.

The outage started at about 12:40 p.m. and power was restored around 2:08 p.m., he said. Smart said while the complete cause of the failure was unknown, it was believed that wind was a major factor.

No other power outages were reported, according to TID spokeswoman Michelle Reimers, Tuesday, April 9.

Winds picked up again Tuesday, April 9, though not quite as aggressively, according to the National Weather Service website. Winds remained steady between 15 and 25 mph with gusts reaching no more than 30 mph, the website indicated.

• Contact Nick Rappley at 892-6187, ext. 31 or nick@pattersonirrigator.com.

Comments
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bubbalynch
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April 10, 2013
It caused them headaches? To most people that is called "WORK"! smh


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