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Police ID woman killed by falling tree

A maple tree, seen here, crushed Julia Hughes,

A maple tree, seen here, crushed Julia Hughes, 73, of Brooklyn. Hughes was leaving a party Saturday night when fierce winds knocked down the tree on Lanier Lane in Bay Shore. (March 14, 2010) Photo Credit: James Carbone

Suffolk police identified a woman killed by a falling tree Saturday night during a Nor'Easter that brought 60 mph winds to the area and knocked out power to thousands.

Julia Hughes, of Brooklyn,  was walking to her car after leaving a family party when a tree fell on her in front of 30 Lanier Lane in Bay Shore at approximately 8:20 p.m. Hughes was transported to Southside Hospital where she was pronounced dead.

More than 100,000 LIPA  customers are still without power. For some, power likely won't be fully restored for several days, Long Island Power Authority spokeswoman Vanessa Baird-Streeter said early Sunday.

The outages affected more than 10 percent of LIPA’s 1.1 million customers. “We have to judge the safety of our service people . . . to be elevated in a bucket truck,” she said.

LIPA had requested help from other utility companies in the region, but the companies are struggling with their own outages and said they couldn't help, she said.

Gusts on the Island reached 67 mph, said Phil Bachmann, a National Weather Service meteorologist. In Wantagh, 2.39 inches of rain fell, while the rain measured 2.37 inches in Upton from Friday night through yesterday.

Across the Northeast, more than 500,000 customers lost power, the AP reported.

On the Long Island Rail Road, power lines on tracks canceled service on multiple branches.

A Cablevision spokesman said there were “isolated service disruptions” related to power outages. The cable supplier is the parent company of Newsday.

Main Street in Farmingdale was closed as power poles leaned over the road and a traffic signal dangled a few feet from the pavement. In Lynbrook, winds blew part of the roof off an apartment building on Duryea Place about 6 p.m., forcing 50 people to evacuate, said Lynbrook Police Lt. James Fleming. In Long Beach, flooding closed Long Beach Road north of the bridge, police said.

In Bellmore, a tree crashed onto a house and driveway, crushing a car and puncturing the garage and dining room. Michael Giangrande said he was outside at 6 p.m. when a gust knocked the tree onto his 2002 gold Mercedes-Benz.

Giangrande said he and his wife were uninjured. “I hope this is the worst of it,” Giangrande said.

Linda Simmons of East Massapequa said her home, next to a canal, was surrounded by water by 9 p.m. “I’ve never seen it like this,” said Simmons, who is the relative of a Newsday employee.

Some airlines chose not to even attempt to land at New York-area airports, delaying or diverting flights, authorities said. The weather service received a report of a hurricane-speed 75-mph gust at Kennedy.

With Lizzy Nielsen


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