HOPKINTON — A microburst that touched down in Hopkinton knocked down several hundred trees Tuesday evening, said National Weather Service meteorologist Michael Cempa.
“We estimated 60 to 80 mile an hour winds,” he said.
A vehicle was also reportedly crushed by a falling tree, but there were no injuries, he said.
The thunder storm that created the microburst crossed into the Hanover and Lebanon area from Vermont earlier on Tuesday and hit Hopkinton shortly after 7:30 p.m., Cempa said. It then made its way southeast across the state before fizzling out in the northwestern area of Rockingham County.
“It was a line of thunderstorms that drew straight-line winds,” Cempa said. “It’s just air that comes falling down out of the thunder storm all at once and impacts with the ground and (the air) pushes out (in different directions). It technically goes in all directions of the storm, but the worst of it goes in the direction the storm is moving.”
College Hill Road resident Pauline Meridien was at home with her husband, Walter England, when the storm hit.
“It’s amazing how huge these trees are,” she said. “It was just awful. We had a 60 foot blue spruce that came down next to the house.
“It was so powerful. I never experienced anything so strong. It was quite intense and so quick, about 10 minutes it was over, quite amazing,” Meridien said.
Meridien is the founder and executive director of Back in the Saddle on College Hill Road, an equestrian therapeutic ranch for people with disabilities.
Her son and daughter-in-law Matt and Jen Maloney live next door with their children Julia, 6, and Brady, 7. Her son took his family into his basement.
Four large pine trees fell around her son’s house but did not damage it, she said.
She was concerned Wednesday for the eight horses on the farm, which are watered via an electric powered hose.
Since many of the downed trees knocked out the power for the area, about 30 volunteers spent the day hacking away at trees to clear a path to the pond.
PSNH workers replaced a transformer on College Hill Road Wednesday, but did not remove any of the trees, she said, giving Meriden the impression they are in for a long power outage.
“It’s time to make do with what we can. We are eating everything in the refrigerator tonight,” she said.
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Meghan Pierce may be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.