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Wild winds knock down trees, power lines

March 8, 2011 12:00:00 AM PST
Crews were busy cleaning on Tuesday after wild winds knocked down trees and power lines across L.A. County.

Intense gusts ranging from 20 to 45 mph toppled trees onto homes and vehicles and left branches all over the streets.

A huge eucalyptus tree crashed on to a house on the 8800 block of Wall Street in South Los Angeles. It crushed the roof and left a gaping hole in the sidewalk. A firefighter who responded to the scene suffered minor injuries and was taken to the hospital.

Resident Jesus Juarez was at home at the time watching TV with a cousin when the tree fell, and he said he was lucky to be alive. The tree destroyed Juarez's home, and Juarez's cousin was taken to a local hospital to be treated for cuts and bruises.

Nearby, another tree toppled over onto a porch in the 4200 block of South Dalton Avenue around 11:30 p.m. Monday, taking down telephone and electrical wires with it. The homeowner said he thought it was an earthquake.

"It took off part of the porch and damaged the eaves a bit and right now it's resting on basically the center of the house," said the homeowner.

No one was injured in the incident.

There was destruction in other parts of the Southland as well. The strong winds caused a transformer to explode behind a home in Sherman Oaks, leaving over 1,000 residents without power. DWP said on Tuesday afternoon that power has been restored to all residents.

A tree came down in Canoga Park, damaging the patio of an apartment complex and crushing a car.