Lockport Union-Sun & Journal — Wild weather brought down trees, utility poles and power lines in parts of eastern and central Niagara County just after 2 p.m. on Wednesday, and one man was pinned under a tree at Lazy Lakes Campgrounds in Cambria.
Widespread damage was reported. Several wires came down on Upper and Lower Mountain Roads in Cambria. A large limb fell onto the roadway along North Ridge Road, Route 93. Several traffic lights were knocked out in the town as well.
National Grid reported there were about 2,500 customers without power in Cambria.
Cambria firefighters worked to free the man, who has not been identified. The tree was reported to have fallen on his legs, causing a fracture to one of them.
The man was taken by ambulance to Erie County Medical Center. Mercy Flight had been requested, but the storm prevented the helicopter from taking off.
The storm was part of a slow-moving line of storms that rolled through the heart of Niagara County. Torrents of rain fell for more than 20 minutes in Lockport and the surrounding area.
In the Middleport area, at least three large trees came down along Town Line Road.
“I have a 30-foot crater in my yard,” said George Homesberger after a large black walnut tree came crashing down outside his home at 9351 Town Line Road, exposing roots that were 10 inches and more in diameter. “If it fell the other way it would have wrecked my house.”
Homesberger estimated the tree was more than 100 years old. He said another black walnut tree fell in his neighbor’s yard, and another tree landed on a neighbor’s barn.
He was waiting for a representative from his insurance company to inspect the damage. In the mean time, “everyone’s stopping by” to look at the fallen tree, which also took out his LP gas line.
Homesberger said he was told that the damage was caused by a straight line wind shear.
Kirk Apffel, a meteorologist with the Buffalo office of the National Weather Service said the storms that rolled through were part of a frontal boundary that interacted with a lake breeze.
Weather spotters won’t report their daily local results until this morning, but Apffel said radar estimates point to parts of the county receiving more than one inch of rain from the storms.
Apffel said he saw a photo of the tree that fell on the man in Cambria, but said he wasn’t sure if the tree was felled by wind or lightning.
A second cloudburst made its way through the county between 7:30 and 8:30 p.m. Wednesday.
There is a chance of showers and thunderstorms after 4 p.m. today. It will be mostly cloudy, with a high near 81. Winds of 3-8 mph will come from the north. The chance of precipitation is 30 percent and 80 percent tonight.