NUTLEY, N.J. (CBSNewYork) – Wild winds barreled through our area Monday.

High winds toppled this tree in Passaic, New Jersey on Nov. 2, 2020. (credit: CBS2)

Fierce winds raged across the Tri-State Area, toppling trees, power lines, and causing injury.

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As CBS2’s Vanessa Murdock reports, it’s amazing a man trapped inside a car is expected to be OK after a tree landed on it, crushing it from the back seat to the bumper.

Amador Castro, 56, a pastor in Clifton, was rescued by Passaic firefighters.

Murdock spoke with his sister Judith.

“I don’t know how he is. We go to the hospital right now, I hope everything is all right,” Judith Castro said.

As she went to the hospital to check on her brother, crews got to work cleaning up, pulling away smaller sections of the massive tree while cutting through the thickest.

High winds toppled this tree in Passaic, New Jersey on Nov. 2, 2020. (credit: CBS2)

There was more injury, this time in Morris Township. A tree draped across the road fell on a woman out walking. She was taken to Morristown Medical Center. There was no word on her condition.

In Nutley, thankfully nobody was home when gusts in excess of 40 mph ripped a tree right out of the blacktop and sent it crashing onto the roofline, mangling the gable.

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The sound woke neighbors from their slumber.

High winds toppled this tree in New Jersey on Nov. 2, 2020. (credit: CBS2)

“I was in my bed, actually. It was crazy wind,” said Nutley resident Margaret Marano. “I heard this really loud bang. I assumed it was a tree, and a couple of minutes later I heard sirens, everybody is out here, trees on house.”

“My grandma said there’s something happening. I had to go on school, and then she starts yelling the tree fell. So I see the tree fell. I’m curious how it fell,” said 10-year-old Michael Perna.

The tree took power lines with it. When Murdock arrived on scene, authorities blocked off much of Oak Street to protect all curious about what happened here from live wires that decorated driveways and cars. Some wires sparked and set fire to the grass at the home of William Kyritsis. The smell of charred earth filled the air.

“That’s OK. Better than a tree in my house,” he said.

By Monday afternoon PSE&G arrived to repair the damage. Kyritsis scraped away char from his lawn. Cranes followed, removing the trees so the full scope of destruction to the home can be determined.

Downed trees meant delays for some Metro North and LIRR riders earlier, but all got back on track later.


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