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UPDATE: Wind downs power lines, topples trees in SCV

Posted: October 4, 2013 8:22 a.m.
Updated: October 4, 2013 7:36 p.m.

Workers put fallen tree debris into a chipper near the intersection of Pine Street and Sixth Street in Newhall Friday afternoon. Wind is blamed for downing power lines in the same area earlier in the day. Signal photo by Luke Money.

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SANTA CLARITA - Damaging Santa Ana winds swept through the Santa Clarita Valley on Friday, toppling trees, knocking down power lines and ripping street signs off their mounts.

The winds are expected to continue through Saturday afternoon with gusts up to 60 mph in the Santa Clarita Valley and up to 80 mph in some mountain passes.

Weather officials warned of continuing hazardous driving conditions for high-profile vehicles, while city public works employees braced for more downed trees and tree branches today.

Staffers from the city’s Urban Forestry division responded to about 40 reports of wind-related damage Friday, including at least three incidents in which tree limbs fell and damaged cars, said city spokeswoman Gail Ortiz.

Large trees were felled or damaged on Magic Mountain Parkway at Dickason Drive, where a eucalyptus fell across the road and blocked traffic, and at Apple and Eighth streets in Newhall, where a mature tree was so damaged by the wind that it might have to be removed, according to Ortiz.

Other downed trees or limbs were reported at Soledad Canyon Road and Anne Freda Street, blocking the intersection around 3:45 a.m., on Plum Canyon Road south of the city boundaries and on San Francisquito Canyon Road in an unincorporated area north of Copper Hill.

The wind also took its toll on some street signs. Signs at the intersections of Bouquet Canyon Road at Centurion Way, Stillmore Street at Whites Canyon Road and Bouquet Canyon Road at David Way were all reported to be damaged by the wind Friday, but all were repaired, according to Ortiz.

Law enforcement officials were also kept busy as a result of the gusty weather.

A shopping cart was sent sailing down Bouquet Canyon Road during morning rush hour, causing a traffic hazard in Saugus, said Deputy Josh Dubin with the Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff's Station.

Friday also saw two reports of downed power lines, one in Canyon Country and the other at Pine Street and Sixth Street in Newhall, Dubin said.

Dubin said anyone who sees downed power lines is urged to immediately dial 911.

“If you see downed wires stay away from them,” he said. “Assume all wires are energized and live.”

No injuries were reported as a result of the windy weather.

“There have just been a lot of traffic delays,” he said.

The wind also increased the number of residential burglary alarms, Dubin said, as a strong gust of wind can blow open a door that is not properly secured, triggering an alarm.
On Twitter @LukeMMoney




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