On the trail of fallen trees, landslides and downed power lines
PORTLAND, Ore. - Wind gusts returned to the region Tuesday, knocking down trees, downing power lines and causing plenty of damage and close calls.
Late in the afternoon a tree fell on the MAX Blue line tracks and into overhead wires in Gresham east of City Hall between Gresham Central Station and Cleveland Station. The train hit it and was damaged, including having widows smashed out. There have been no reports of injuries.
TriMet is using shuttle buses between Ruby Junction and Cleveland Avenue.
TriMet crews were busy clearing the tree off the tracks at 6 p.m. The damage to the overhead wires will also need to be fixed before the MAX is put back in service at that location.
A fallen tree closed all lanes of Highway 43 just south of the Sellwood Bridge. The tree fell just after noon and took power lines down with it about 1,000 feet south of the bridge, Multnomah County spokesman Mike Pullen said.
While no one was hurt, the tree fell between a truck and a car with a baby inside.
One driver trying to make a U-turn and go the other direction got stuck in the mud on the side of the highway. A nearby construction crew pitched in to help clean up the mess and had the highway reopened in about two hours.
In Lake Oswego, downed trees hit two cars. Again, no one was hurt.
All the stuff coming down had people looking up more often.
After seeing parked cars that had fell victim to falling trees, Amanda Wolf said she'll think a little harder about parking next to large trees.
"I drove up here and saw that (the trees on top of cars) - just shocked to see the damage done," she said. "I'll be more mindful about parking next to a tree. If there's a spot where there's no tree, I'll choose that one."
Many trees fell because of rotted roots and wet ground. One 100-foot tall fir crack like a toothpick halfway up, because it was rotting inside.
An arborist said if the top canopy of your tree is thin, it may need some attention right way.
In Damascus the Clackamas County Sheriff's Office tweeted that Highway 224 east of Southeast Eckert is closed due to a small landslide that pushed trees into the road. Crews cleared the debris and the road reopened about an hour later.
Hwy 224 East of SE Eckert ln in Damascus is closed due to a small landslide and trees blocking the roadway. #alertClackamas Sheriff (@ClackCoSheriff) February 26, 2014
PGE reported more than 4,300 customers without power at about 5 p.m. - 860 in Clackamas County and 3,411 Multnomah County. Check PGE's power outage list.
KATU's Bob Heye contributed to this story.