A falling tree destroys a Historic Church in Pleasanton, but fortunately, no one was injured. The Lighthouse Baptist Church, built in 1876, had its nursery and toddler wing destroyed by a fallen tree.
According to Pastor Bill Bryson, almost everyone was on the other side of the church when the incident occurred. The administrative assistant narrowly escaped as the tree just missed the office. Firefighters arrived on the scene after receiving a call at 2:07 p.m. on Tuesday, Local News Matters reported.
A Fallen Tree Devastates Lighthouse Baptist Church
CBS News said all 17 people inside the building escaped without injury. The Lighthouse Baptist Church, built in 1876, suffered damage to its nursery and toddler wing, but the rest of the church and its Christian school will not be affected by the incident.
Livermore-Pleasanton Fire Department Battalion Chief Craig Berchtold revealed that many calls had been received on Tuesday about trees falling on buildings. An arborist had been hired to remove the fallen tree from the church. Meanwhile, the church pastor, Bill Bryson, said the nursery and toddler wing would be relocated while it is rebuilt.
The tree narrowly missed the administrative office of the church. The church will negotiate with its insurance company and contractors. Fortunately, Bryson said the incident did not happen on a Sunday when the situation could have been much worse.
Students and staff remained in the building while emergency services handled the situation. Bryson's wife and the church secretary were inside when the tree fell, and they described the noise as loud and jarring, similar to an earthquake.
Also Read: Worshippers Hold Easter Service In Church Building Destroyed By Tornado
Strong Gusts of Wind Gushes Through Pleasanton
Another source, Patch, reported that on Tuesday, Pleasanton experienced strong gusts of over 50 mph, causing numerous trees to fall throughout the city. The Livermore-Pleasanton Fire Department responded to more than 80 calls for service, including rescues, structure fires, and downed power lines. The city activated the Emergency Operation Center, and various departments assessed the damage caused by the wind event.
According to City spokesperson Heather Tiernan, there were 97 incidents reported in Pleasanton and Livermore, including one injury from a tree falling on a residential garage. The incidents included:
- Downed trees and power lines.
- Damaged buildings.
- Blocked roadways.
- Traffic lights are out of service.
The city deployed additional crews on Tuesday but resumed normal staffing on Wednesday.
Ritter, a former Pleasanton's planning and parks commissions member, has close ties to the city. According to ABC7 News, he stopped by the Lighthouse Baptist Church to see the aftermath of a fallen tree. Ritter believes it's essential to look up and be mindful of the trees lining the streets in Pleasanton, many of which are large. He suggests that the city needs to improve its tree-trimming efforts to reduce the risk of trees toppling over.
Although tree trimming is expensive, preventing trees from falling over during windstorms is necessary. Jeff Meier, whose house was partially damaged by the fallen tree, is grateful that nobody was injured. He reminds everyone that large trees are beautiful but need proper maintenance.
Historic St. Joseph Parish Church Roof Destroyed By Windstorm