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Complete Coverage of the East Arlington Microburst

A comprehensive look at Wednesday evening's violent storm.

Go to the East Arlington Microburst topics page for continuing coverage of Wednesday’s violent storm.

Or sign up for the free Arlington Patch daily newsletter, and follow us on Facebook and Twitter for immediate updates.

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UPDATE (3:20 p.m., Friday, July 20)

State Sens. Ken Donnelly and Will Brownsberger and Rep. Sean Garballey to provide funds for the clean-up of the microburst that ravaged through parts of Arlington on Wednesday, July 18.

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UPDATE (9 a.m., Friday, July 20)

Here are a few posts from this morning.

-  See our top 15 photos from Wednesday's storm, and vote for which one you like best.

-

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UPDATE (6:30 p.m., Thursday, July 19)

From the Town of Arlington:

NStar work crews continue to restore power to homes. If you are still without power, please contact NStar directly at 1-800-592-2000 or online at nstar.com.

Officials continue to urge residents to exercise caution and keep clear of all downed wires. Consider all downed wires, live.

Public Works crews have cleared all major roadways and most smaller roads of tree debris. Crews have also removed most trees on homes. The effort to remove trees from homes will cease for this evening and continue again tomorrow morning.

If you have not contacted Public Works to report a tree on a home, please call 781-316-3301.

When immediate public safety issues are addressed, Public Works will systematically collect downed Town trees and branches along roadways. To assist in this clean up, Public Works is asking residents, if they are able, to stack Town tree branches along the sidewalk in a way that allows access to sidewalks and roadways. At this time, Public Works estimates collection of Town tree debris to be over the next couple weeks.

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UPDATE (5 p.m., Thursday, July 19)

After the microburst ripped through East Arlington Wednesday evening, Patricia Smith, a Warren Street resident, who lives just after the Broadway split, found a baby carp near a tree in her lawn Thursday morning, according to Kevin Kennedy, who owns nearby Upholstery on Broadway.

Kennedy believes the baby carp was lifted from either Spy Pond or Mystic River during Wednesday’s violent storm, but a National Weather Service meteorologist is skeptical.

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UPDATE (3:30 p.m., Thursday, July 19)

After the microburst tore through East Arlington Wednesday evening, the Arlington community showed its just that: a community.

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UPDATE (2:40 p.m., Thursday, July 19)

Charles Foley, a meteorologist at the National Weather Service in Taunton, that a microburst did hit East Arlington Wednesday evening. He said winds were estimated to have been between 70 and 80 mph.

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UPDATE (2 p.m., Thursday, July 19)

From the Town of Arlington:

Storm damage has resulted in the closure of the following parks and fields for safety reasons. Reopening of these areas is not known at this time. Future updates can be found online at arlingtonma.gov.

  • North Union - the baseball & softball fields (no games) and the playground
  • Scannell - baseball field (no games)
  • Thorndike – fenced in dog park
  • Crosby - soccer field area (no games)
  • Gibbs School - elementary school playground

The Minuteman Bikepath is closed to all modes of traffic, bicycling and pedestrian, between Varnum Street and Swan Place. Please observe signs and other barriers while work crews clean up the area.

Many other recreation areas in East Arlington are open, but some have tree debris that will be attended to in the coming days. Please exercise caution and stay clear of work crews.

The Town thanks residents for their patience during clean up operations and asks that you help neighbors who may need assistance during this time.

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UPDATE (12:45 p.m., Thursday, July 19)

The newly-opened  has been closed until further notice due to possible damage from the storm.

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UPDATE (12:20 p.m., Thursday, July 19)

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UPDATE (11:45 a.m., Thursday, July 19)

Arlington resident Heather-Jean Tsang got caught out on Bates Road when the mircroburst hit.

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UPDATE (10:25 a.m., Thursday, July 19)

Gov. Deval Patrick is monitoring the situation in Arlington, according to an office spokeswoman, Chelsie Ouellette. The governor has no immediate plans to visit town, she said.

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UPDATE (9:50 a.m., Thursday, July 19)

Officials from the National Weather Service will be in town Thursday morning to determine what the weather event actually was, according to Town Manager Adam Chapdelaine.

He said Arlington's legislative delegation has also been in touch with Gov. Deval Patrick about the possibility of state aid. For the town to receive federal aid, Patrick would first have to declare a state of emergency, according to Chapdelaine.

Chapdelaine would not speculate on the cost of the clean up.

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UPDATE (9:10 a.m., Thursday, July 19)

Arlington Police Chief Fred Ryan confirmed Thursday morning that no injuries were reported from the microburst.

He said off-duty officers were called in to assist after the storm, and crews from the Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency were also on scene.

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UPDATE (8:40 a.m., Thursday, July 19)

More from the town:

NStar reports several power outages and ask residents who are still without power to contact them to verify they are on the list to have power restored. Additionally, report trees or branches on power lines to them at 1-800-592-2000 or online at [http://www.nstar.com/residential/storm_center/default.asp ] nstar.com.

Public Works is asking residents who have street trees leaning on their house to contact them to ensure they are on their list at 781-316-3301. Currently there are over two dozen reports of Town trees on houses in addition to trees blocking streets, hanging in wires, on walkways and in Town parks and fields.

Public Works continues to work with a team of contractors to clear tree debris. After roadways and immediate public safety issues are addressed, they will systematically collect downed Town trees and branches along roadways. To assist in this clean up, Public Works is asking residents, if they are able, to stack Town tree branches along the sidewalk in a way that allows access to sidewalks and roadways. At this time, Public Works estimates collection of Town tree debris to be over the next couple weeks.

Polling locations in East Arlington for today’s Special Election are open. There is some tree damage around the Hardy School location, but it is accessible. Officials ask to exercise caution in the area.

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A confirmed microburst . The violent storm uprooted numerous trees and at least two utility poles, downed lines and flooded streets.

Much of East Arlington lost power, and most roads in the area were impassable, including Massachusetts Avenue for more than two hours, as a downed tree at Linwood Street.

Trees fell on at least a handful of East Arlington homes, including and . No injuries were reported Wednesday night.

Residents took to the streets to survey the damage after the roughly 15-minute barrage passed. Michelle Pirog, an Arlington native whose car in the parking lot behind her apartment at 276 Massachusetts Ave., said she had never seen anything like it.

“Been to Niagra Falls?” she asked. “Imagine looking out your window into them. You see absolutely nothing but a real white wall.”

The microburst was confirmed on Twitter by WXIBOX, an amateur radio station at the National Weather Service’s Taunton office. Microbursts are the result of powerful thunderstorms, which push wind straight down to the ground, according to the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration. When that happens, the wind then shears across the ground at breakneck speeds, intensifying the effects of the rain and lightning.

Wednesday’s storm was part of a series of powerful thunderstorms that soaked the region with heavy rain, along with large hail stones.

Arlington Police, Fire and Department of Public Works personnel worked through Wednesday night.

Complete Coverage of the East Arlington Microburst

(More than 150 photos of Wednesday evening’s violent storm.)

Check back to Arlington Patch for updates as they become available.

From the Town of Arlington:

Officials ask residents to contact NStar for downed wires at 1-800-592-2000 or online at nstar.com.

For downed trees, contact Public Works dispatch at 781-316-3301.

Also note, areas of the bike path in East Arlington around Lake Street are cut off by fallen trees. Through passage will be unavailable until the trees can be removed.

John Waller (Editor) July 19, 2012 at 12:36 PM
Just so everyone's aware ... this is going to be my landing page for all of our microburst coverage, so this article will be continually updated.
Amy Kahn July 19, 2012 at 01:44 PM
Calling people clowns won't help your cause.
C.W. July 19, 2012 at 07:16 PM
Yeah blow those downed trees into Cambridge!
Gone4Now July 19, 2012 at 11:22 PM
to Amy Kahn, If the costume fits, I sugest they wear it

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