What to Know
- A young trick-or-treater in Westchester County was left with broken bones after a tree fell on top of her amid powerful winds
- The young girl was out with dozens of other children and parents when the massive tree suddenly snapped and pinned her underneath
- All the downed trees and wires led to more than 50,000 customers across the tri-state without power shortly after midnight
A young trick-or-treater in Westchester County was left with broken bones after a tree fell on top of her, neighbors said, amid powerful winds that came as part of a Halloween storm.
The young girl, around 9 or 10 years old, was getting her goodies in her New Rochelle neighborhood around 6:30 p.m., as the streets were filled with other youngsters celebrating Halloween and donning their outfits. The massive tree suddenly snapped due to strong wind gusts, pinning her underneath.
Dozens of other children and parents looked on as the girl screamed out in pain, witnesses saying they could hear her say how scared she was to her mother who was right beside her.
Crews at the scene had to use chainsaws to help break the tree apart in sections, while firefighters were asking the girl to wiggle her feet, according to a neighbor.
The child was taken to a nearby hospital. Her condition is not known, but neighbors said the injuries did not appear to be life-threatening, with a few broken bones.
Neighbors told NBC New York that the tree was basically dead and had been ready to fall for years. Some said they had previously reported it multiple times to the city and Con Edison, as the tree is immediately next to power lines. According to the neighbors, the issue was being looked into but no action had yet been taken.
Hours after the incident, the tree had been removed and the street was cleared, with just the trunk remaining.
Chuck Strome, manager of the city of New Rochelle, expressed the community's "heartfelt concern to the injured child and her family, and to all the families in the area who were impacted by last night's tragic accident."
"When a tree is in close proximity to electrical wires, the City cannot take any action until Con Edison first removes the top of the tree. Since September, the City has been in regular contact with Con Edison to repeatedly urge the utility to address the tree at 4 Maywood, and this work received all requisite City permits months ago," Strome's statement Friday said. "New Rochelle’s Department of Public Works reiterated this request as recently as yesterday. Con Edison’s catastrophic failure to address these conditions in a timely fashion should lead to a fundamental re-evaluation of the utility’s entire process for ensuring safety around trees in urgent need of maintenance."
Con Edison said it was in contact with New Rochelle city officials to "review the matter," adding, "Our hearts go out to the young girl and her family."
Elsewhere around the tri-state area, there were a slew of reports of downed trees. In Livingston, New Jersey, a large tree toppled down onto a vehicle. Not far in Union, another tree snapped and fell onto an occupied home but fortunately, no one was injured in either incidents. In the town of Wall, a tree fell and took down three utility poles, bringing wires down with them.
Electrical fires were brought down in Brooklyn in the Bath Beach neighborhood, sparking fire. In the Bronx's Claremont section, the winds were so strong it brought down part of a vacant building case. In Queens, several trees fell onto cars, leaving owners to deal with damage come morning.
All the downed trees and wires led to more than 50,000 customers across the tri-state without power shortly after midnight.
No other injures have been reported.