PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — Mother Nature struck again Friday afternoon; and dozens of trees that once dotted local neighborhoods were sent crashing to the ground by strong winds and heavy rain.
It happened to the tree in Jeannie Shumovich’s backyard.
“I was working upstairs when I heard a loud boom and my boys were downstairs, and I heard them say, ‘Oh my God!’ So, we go running down, and the tree was as it is now,” Shumovich said.
Shumovich was not alone. A limb from another tree crashed into a car on Hazel Avenue in Butler while the pizza delivery driver was still inside.
Not far away, another tree took out part of a chimney before it crashed to the ground on Chestnut Street.
“If you get soaked ground and trees lean, it’s too heavy; then you get a big wind, the tree is coming down,” said Charlie Martin, of CRM Services.
Martin, a local arborist, says wet ground and strong winds are some of the factors that bring trees down.
He also blames heavy growth, which adds weight, and trees too thick for winds and sunlight to pass through.
Experts say just as you maintain your house and lawn, you need to maintain they trees in your yard. If you don’t, you could pay for it later.
According to Martin, tree maintenance is also important because you may have a dead one in your yard and not find out until it’s too late.
“Dead trees have a tendency to come over without warning,” says Martin. “That’s the scary part; you have no idea when it’s going to give, how long it’s been up; so dead trees need to come out period.”
During the storm, thousands of customers lost their electricity; many of those outages were caused by downed trees crashing into power lines.
Severe Spring Storms Topple Trees, Cause Power Outages (5/10/13)