• WEATHER ALERT Winter Weather Advisory

Storm brings hail, downed trees and power lines

A large tree fell in the Oakland Hills
February 16, 2011 6:15:23 PM PST
Cleanup is underway from the wild storm that blew through the Bay Area Tuesday night and Wednesday morning. Flooding and hail were spotted all over the Bay Area.

There were some terrifying moments for residents in the Oakland Hills. A large tree went down, which caused a power outage and a fire.

"I heard a big crash, the lights went out and I saw a flash through my window. There was a fire down the street. A power line fell down. There were very bright flames coming out of the end of the power line. That lit up the whole neighborhood for about a half hour, before the fire department came," said home owner Octave Baker.

Baker noticed the flames near his house on Skyline in the Oakland Hills about 3:00 Wednesday morning.

"We are going to have to string a new conductor and start a new transformer, so I think it is going to be a little while," said PG&E foreman Gary Kelley.

There was little damage to Baker's car and none to his house. Sometimes life is a game of inches.

It was a game of inches near the Bay Bridge toll plaza for the morning commuters. Several inches of standing water made for some very nice pictures, but no accidents - sometimes because of good driving, sometimes because of just plain luck.

Those not in luck were the thousands of people who lost power in the storm. But that was not a problem for Oakland Hills resident Jane English, she has a wakeup system to match any power outage.

"I have a battery backup in my alarm clock, so I set three alarm clocks so I wasn't affected by not waking up this morning," said Oakland Hills resident Jane English.

A man who lives next door to the fallen tree on Skyline in the Oakland Hills feels fortunate to have lived in the area for nine years and not once experienced such a rude awakening himself.

"I look at the trees across the street and hope none of those will fall," said Oakland Hills resident Charles Turzan.

As of 5 p.m. crews were still trying to remove the tree on Skyline Boulevard and crews hoped to restore power to everyone by Wednesday evening.


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