Leif Ericson Park

The Daily Plant : Thursday, August 9, 2007

Tornado Hits Brooklyn

Photo by Phil Abramson

Yesterday morning, a tornado touched down on parts of Brooklyn, the first to hit the borough since 1889. It was categorized by the National Weather Service as an EF2, or an extreme F2 category tornado, with winds between 113-157 mph.

The tornado first hit Bay Ridge Avenue, between 3rd and 4th Avenues, just after 6:30 a.m. It then took a northeast path across 68th Street and continued east through Leif Ericson Park, where more than a third of the park’s trees were lost. It then hit an automobile dealership at 66th Street and 5th Avenue and continued further northeast along 6th Avenue, where it continued to devastate trees and homes up to 58th Street.

The most severely affected areas in terms of tree loss were northern Bay Ridge, Sunset Park, Midwood and parts of Shore Parkway. As of yesterday afternoon, Brooklyn Forestry received 512 emergency calls, including reports of 212 downed trees and 276 trees with fallen limbs. Non-emergency forestry personnel from across the City joined in to assist. Queens was also affected by the storm with 84 emergency calls including 18 fallen trees.

As a precaution, the area is being treated as if it was part of an Asian Longhorned Beetle quarantine zone, even though Bay Ridge is not technically part of a zone. All residents are asked to call 311 to have wood removed, and not to do it themselves. All wood will then be chipped and incinerated to protect against the spread of ALB. Dreier Offerman Park is serving as a temporary site for these activities.

We applaud all of our personnel who responded, and continue to respond, to this unprecedented emergency.


"Fanatics in power and the funnel of a tornado have this in common –

the narrow path in which they move is marked by violence and destruction."

Oscar Ostlund

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