High wind aftermath: Smashed cars, downed power lines and closed streets in Northeast Ohio

50 mph wind gusts trigger outages and damage across Northeast Ohio

CLEVELAND, Ohio (WOIO) - Wind gusts eclipsed 70 mph in some areas of Northeast Ohio Monday morning, and the blustery weather left damage across the region.

Part of the roof of Edison Middle school in Erie County was blown off by the strong winds. Lawrence Hamilton was working with crews to fix it. He said, it’s “definitely one of the worst I’ve seen. Usually roofs like this on commercial buildings don’t blow off that easily.”

Around the corner, Ricco Daniels was out with his family and neighbors after a giant tree fell in front of his Berlin Heights home early in the morning. “It sounded like a freight train. I thought it was a tornado honestly,” he said.

Nearly all of Berlin Heights was left without power after the wind tore down trees and crashed power lines.

“I’ve never seen damage this bad out here,” Daniels said. They’re glad this time their house was out of the fall line, but now they’re trying to remove the whole tree. “There’s a giant crack up in there so we have to get the whole tree down.”

Did you hear the wind last night? It got up to 71 MPH in some areas!! 💨 This tree took out power in Berlin Heights,...

Posted by Kendall Forward on Monday, December 30, 2019

In Westlake, a tree blew over and tore down power lines from three utility poles. It fell onto a car with a woman inside. She was trapped briefly. Westlake Fire was able to get her out and get her to the hospital. She is being treated for non-life threatening injuries.

A neighbor, Joyce Kuttin, described hearing the tree fall. She said it sounded like thunder. “All that I heard was boom. It was horrible.”

Hillard Boulevard, where the tree fell, was closed off all day in front of Clague Park while crews tried to restore the power and clear the way.

The Illuminating Company estimated, at its peak, that more than 50,000 homes lost power. It may take as long as a few days for power to be restored to all customers.

Until then, people like Linda Bound and her husband in Westlake were sharing what little generator power they had with neighbors. “Hey, as long as I got heat and a coffee pot I’m good,” said Linda.

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