FARMINGTON — Strong winds ripped through San Juan County Wednesday night, knocking over trees and causing power outages throughout the county.
At around 7:40 p.m. Wednesday, the National Weather Service received a report of wind gusts up to 62 miles per hour at the Four Corners Regional Airport in Farmington.
Police and fire dispatchers on Wednesday evening received several reports of fallen trees, as well as two reports of trampolines blowing into fences, according to Farmington police dispatchers. Dispatchers said they received at least five calls — four in Farmington and one in the county — of trees that fell and took down power lines.
All power had been restored by midnight, according to the Farmington Electric Utility Company.
Bailey Beckner, 6, was playing outside her grandparents' house in the 900 block of North Orchard Avenue around 8 p.m. when she heard a pop. She went inside and told her grandmother the tree across the street looked like it was going to fall. It was swaying in the wind, she recalled.
Her grandparents didn't take her report too seriously.
"We were all surprised when we got up this morning and the tree had fallen," said the girl's grandfather, Odes Wilderson.
The tree fell over a fence and onto the house of the neighbor to the north, where it landed on the side of the roof and on a red car parked in the driveway.
Before it fell, the large silver spruce was in Samuel Johnson's backyard. The owners of the home were out of town when the tree fell, and a caretaker was looking after their home. The caretaker told Johnson Wednesday night that the tree had fallen. On Thursday, he called the insurance company to report the incident.
Johnson said he thinks the spruce was at least as old as the house, which was built in the late 1940s or early 1950s.
When Johnson bought the house 20 years ago, the spruce was already mature. It was one of two large spruce trees growing in the southwest part of his backyard.
"I didn't even notice the tree had a division," Johnson said.
He said after the tree fell, he could see how it was once two separate trees that had grown together.
When crews clean up the fallen tree, he said he will ask them to remove the other spruce tree, too.