Huge Eucalyptus Falls at Lake Merritt

Windy weather throughout the Bay Area overnight knocked out power for tens of thousands of PG&E customers today and blown trees and debris into roadways.

By Staff and Wires
|  Friday, Nov 22, 2013  |  Updated 7:20 PM PDT
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Oakland newest tourist attraction is a huge tree that fell at the banks of Lake Merritt.

Oakland newest tourist attraction is a huge tree that fell at the banks of Lake Merritt.

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Strong winds knocked out power to thousands.

It also brought down dozens of trees.

The City of Oakland Public Works Agency said it received more than 190 requests for assistance with downed trees, branches and other debris related to the winds.

One of the biggest trees to lose the battle with the winds was a huge eucalyptus at Oakland's Lake Merritt.

The tree fell just outside the Lake Chalet.

Its base is approximately 30-feet in diameter.

The tree brought out dozens of people who wanted to take a photo with the tree as a backdrop. Children and youth were also seen climbing on the trunk of the tree, using it as a jungle gym.

Similar trees kept public works crews busy most of Friday as they responded to reports of other downed trees and branches.

Windy weather throughout the Bay Area overnight knocked out power for tens of thousands of PG&E customers today and blown trees and  debris into roadways.

A wind advisory was issued for most of the regionThursday afternoon and expired this morning, except in the North Bay, a National  Weather Service meteorologist said.

The warning remained in effect until 10 p.m. in high elevation  areas in Marin, Napa and Sonoma counties, according to National Weather  Service meteorologist Logan Johnson.

Gusts reached up to 65 mph in eastern Alameda County, 60 mph in  Sonoma County and up to 50 mph were recorded in higher elevation areas in  Contra Costa County overnight, Johnson said. He said lighter winds are  expected today.

He said a lot of downed trees have been reported in the North Bay  and throughout Contra Costa County.

"We're still seeing it pretty windy up in the hills," Johnson  said.

The wind came after a storm system moved through the Bay Area  earlier this week, he said.

Rain is expected to return on Thanksgiving.

The strong winds also brought massive power outages with 55,000  PG&E customers initially losing power Thursday night, according to utility  officials.

PG&E spokesman Jason King said as of 11 a.m., there were 13,000  customers throughout the Bay Area still without power.

The most heavily impacted areas are in the North Bay, as well as  the East Bay cities of Berkeley, Oakland and Albany, King said.

Some 7,300 East Bay customers were still affected, while 3,400  customers in Sonoma County remained without power.

King said a majority of the outages are related to tree contact  that damaged utility poles and wires.

PG&E hopes to have power restored for all customers by the late  afternoon, he said.
 

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