TUPPER LAKE - Members of the Tupper Lake Volunteer Fire Department responded to four reports of trees on power lines or blocking roads due to high winds on Saturday.
At 10:53 a.m., they responded to trees on wires blocking Wolf Avenue with one truck and 21 members. They stood by and secured the area until a municipal electric team arrived. They were back in service at 11:16 a.m.
At 11:16 a.m., they responded to trees on the power lines at 768 Bartlett Carry Road with two trucks and 20 members. Volunteers secured the area and notified National Grid of the issue, and they were back in service at 12:55 p.m.
High winds and rain Saturday give way to a colorful sunset Saturday night in Keene.
(Photo — John Eldridge)
At 2:01 p.m., they responded to a downed tree blocking Hebert Lane with one truck and 18 members. Volunteers said they cut the tree up and cleared it from the roadway, and there were no power lines involved. Volunteers were back in service at 2:24 p.m.
At 3:25 p.m., they responded to a tree blocking the road at 204 Raquette River Drive with one truck and 22 members. Volunteers said they removed the tree from the road, there were no power lines involved, and they were back in service at 3:34 p.m.
SARANAC LAKE - The Saranac Lake Volunteer Fire Department was called to Ampersand Bay on Lower Saranac Lake at 11:42 a.m. Saturday after a pair of canoes overturned during high winds. Firefighters said the four paddlers made it to a dock at 10 Pinehurst Road. Only one of the two canoes was found. Firefighters assisted the group back to Ampersand Bay and returned to the fire station by 1:03 p.m.
SARANAC LAKE - The Saranac Lake Volunteer Fire Department responded to a report of an overturned canoe in Gull Bay on Upper Saranac Lake at 12:55 p.m. Saturday with five members, one truck and the department's fire boat. The paddlers had been rescued by a pontoon boat and were brought to 711 Bartlett Carry Road by the time firefighters arrived. Firefighters returned to the fire station by 1:45 p.m.
LAKE PLACID - The Lake Placid Volunteer Fire Department responded to reports of trees down on power lines near 44 Greenwood Street at 12:20 p.m. Saturday with one truck and 10 members. Firefighters secured the scene until Lake Placid Municipal Electric Department crews could remove the hazard. Firefighters were back in service by 1:04 p.m.
LAKE PLACID - The Lake Placid Volunteer Fire Department responded to reports of a tree blocking the roadway near 654 Mirror Lake Drive at 4:04 p.m. Saturday with one truck and 10 members. Firefighters removed the hazard and returned to service by 4:28 p.m.
Crews clean up after storms rumble across NY
BUFFALO (AP) - Utility crews are working to restore power to more than a thousand customers after a line of storms rumbled across the state.
The damaging storms felled tree limbs and disrupted power Saturday from western New York to the Adirondacks.
A microburst with winds estimated as high as 65 mph damaged some buildings in Buffalo. WIVB in Buffalo reports that crews will carry out "selective demolition" to ensure the structures remain stable.
National Grid reported Sunday evening that more than 900 customers remained without power in Warren County in the southeast Adirondacks after a series of thunderstorms struck the area.
There were scattered outages elsewhere in the state Sunday.
Images, not frequency, make NYC twisters notable
By VERENA DOBNIK, Associated Press
NEW YORK - Most people wouldn't say New York and tornado in the same breath.
But two twisters that touched down in the nation's biggest city on Saturday are the latest of about 60 small tornadoes that have hit the area in the past half-century, the years for which complete data are available. Saturday's pair brings to 10 the total number of tornadoes since 2007 in New York City, according to the National Weather Service.
To some, the tornadoes of the past few years might appear to be an uptick in the trend. Not so fast, said meteorologist David Stark of the weather service.
"In the past five years, there's been a slight increase in the number of tornadoes in the area, but it's too short a period of time to say it's a growing trend," said Stark.
He pointed to the previous five years, 2001-2006, when a total of eight twisters were recorded.
"That's not to say the touchdowns are going to continue at the same pace," noted Stark. "It's up and down, up and down, and it's not uncommon in the late summer months to see this."
So if the tornadoes in recent years were not unusual, why, then, were they memorable?
Part of the answer may lie in New Yorkers' pockets and handbags, where in recent years many have had a camera close at hand, thanks to ever-evolving cellphone technology. And the rise in social media offers a quick way to spread images and footage of funnel clouds or of winds up to 110 miles per hour wreaking havoc on neighborhoods - as was the case in Brooklyn and Queens on Saturday.
In addition, said Stark, people know of storms much earlier than in the past because of technology that picks up atmospheric instabilities, especially the Doppler radar in use since the 1980s. That means they can prepare for storms earlier, whether that means ducking into the basement or just being aware enough of the weather to consider snapping a picture.
On Saturday, a dark funnel descended on the Breezy Point Surf Club in Queens, flooding nearby roads, mangling power lines and later forcing more than 20,000 spectators to be evacuated from the U.S. Open tennis tournament a few miles away.
It took only a few minutes for the 70-mph wind and roaring water to rip through walls and lift roofs off homes, while sending beach chairs flying and lifting kayaks out of the water. And it didn't take much longer for images of the storm to appear online.
Saturday's second tornado hit Brooklyn's Canarsie neighborhood, whipping up winds of 110 mph over a half mile, snapping trees and house awnings and breaking windows.
On Sunday, power had been restored for the more than 1,100 customers in New York who had lost it.
No deaths or injuries were reported as a result of the twisters, coming from a storm system that brought damaging winds from Pennsylvania to upstate New York.
By comparison, hundreds of people died in 2011 in a part of the country dubbed "Tornado Alley," running through the nation's Midwest and South.