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That was no mere summer shower in the Bronx on Sunday afternoon — that was a tornado.
The fierce winds and rain that knocked down power lines and trees all over the borough and left many residents in Pelham Gardens, Pelham Parkway, Country Club, and Bronxwood all powerless, was officially declared a tornado, the first here since 1974.
Winds were roaring at speeds over 100 mph, according to meteorologists.
All along a number of major streets in the Bronx like Bronxwood and Adee avenues, West Gun Hill Road and Mosholu Parkway, giant trees fell on cars, crushing them.
Across the borough, meanwhile, it was the same story. “Never in my whole life have I seen rain blowing so hard,” said Vinny Prezioso, president of the Northeast Bronx Association, who lives in Pelham Gardens. Two massive, 60-foot tall trees fell down on Stillwell Avenue, blocking the road, and bringing the fire department to the scene to try and repair an electrical transformer that blew out.
Meanwhile Marcia Pavlica, of the Country Club Civic Association, said she saw six trees down on Stillwell. She also observed damage throughout Country Club. “Stadium Avenue is a wind-corridor going up to the park,” she observed.
There were branches scattered all along Astor Avenue
Prezioso and others all throughout lower Pelham Gardens still had no power as of 5 p.m. on Monday.
“They told us we should have power back tonight, maybe between 5 and 8,” said Prezioso. “If they say 5 to 8, I say 8 to 10.”
Con Ed said they expected to restore electricity to all Bronx customers by the end of the day Monday, but that damage to power lines was indeed extensive.
No deaths have been reported from the chaos, but a number of injuries resulted. One man, an officer with the city’s Emergency Services Unit, accidentally cut deep into his leg with a chainsaw while removing a tree from the Hutchinson River Parkway near Orchard Beach.
©2010 Community Newspaper Group
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