A giant, nearly 100-pound tree branch collapsed and fell on top of a mother watching her two children play in San Francisco's North Beach neighborhood Friday afternoon.
The woman, 36, is now in critical condition with a serious head injury, according to police. She had been in the area near Washington Square Park at Columbus Avenue and Filbert Street, watching her children play nearby, when the tree branch came crashing down nearly 60 feet and landed on her head.
"It's devastating beyond words," said Aaron Peskin, a San Francisco City Supervisor. "Obviously our concern now is for this mom."
Police say the 9 and 5-year-old children saw the branch fall.
"When we arrived, the victim was in and out of consciousness," said David Lazar of the San Francisco Police Department. "We were able to get her assistance quickly, and off to the hospital she went."
The victim's children are now with their father as she struggles to recover at San Francisco General Hospital.
Peskin and othe city officials met at the park to consider the safety of the Canary Island Pine Tree, a tree that has "performed well" in San Francisco parks in the past, according to a statement.
That particular pine was last assessed in 2010 and found to be healthy, according to Elton Pon, and outreach and communications manager for San Francisco.
Pon said in an email that the department has conducted 14 tree assessments at the park over the last 10 years, and added that crews would be out next week to check to see if conditions have changed at the park.