Wind batters Bay Area as snow falls in the Sierra

SAN FRANCISCO (KGO) -- Monday's storm system was certainly scenic in some areas, but also caused problems for many. In the San Francisco Bay Area, heavy winds brought down trees. In the Sierra, snowy highways led to accidents.

PG&E told ABC7 News as of 9 p.m. Monday, nearly 5,000 customers in the Bay Area were without electricity. Winds are still causing big problems.

The April storm packed a punch, causing downed trees, power outages, and lots of Sierra snow.

In Palo Alto a massive tree came down on several cars.

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"I heard a huge crash," says Carrie Hussussian.

Hussussian's SUV was smashed. The family in the vehicle next to it was actually inside their car, but escaped unharmed as did everyone else nearby.

"It was really scary," said Hussussian.

Across the Bay in Martinez, another tree came crashing down, this time on a fence.

The wind from the storm system was also felt in the Sierra.

VIDEO: Video shows several inches of fresh Sierra snow
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Video from the UC Berkeley Central Sierra Snow lab shows where they got nearly 4 inches of fresh snow Monday morning.



"J.R. the winds were amazing last night, 100, 110, 115 recorded across the ridgetops. We had just broke out the summer furniture, we thought it was pretty cool to put out on the deck, and last night it sounded like a pinball machine moving around there, there was that much wind," said Kevin 'Coop' Cooper of Cooper Marketing and Media.

But with those winds came snow, at lake level and high elevations -- Something that State Climatologist Michael Anderson says is good news.

"This one system looks like in places, it will outperform April, May, and June of last year," says Anderson.

Anderson says last year was the second driest on record, so while the snow here helps, we are still well below our needs.

"The more moisture on the landscape here shortens the length of that dry season and so we'll take every little bit," said Anderson.

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Unfortunately, not everyone on the roadways were prepared for snowy, slick conditions in April. Snow came at a time when most locals were clearing for defensible space in the case of a wildfire.

"The last four days we've actually raked 17 bags of needles, pine needles out of our yard, and now it's winter again," said Cooper.

PG&E says most outages are in the South Bay and Peninsula. At the height of the high winds nearly 10,000 customers were without electricity.

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