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Lynnfield walloped by powerful nor’easter

By Christopher Roberson

A downed tree on Lowell Street the day after the March 2 nor’easter. The storm brought hurricane force winds and torrential downpours across the region, something Lynnfield and the Commonwealth braced for yet again this week as another nor’easter slammed into the east coast. (Advocate photo by Christopher Roberson)

Police Chief David Breen had been receiving updates from the Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency in the days leading up to the nor’easter, which struck on March 2. “They were really explicit in saying what this storm could do,” he said.

As it turned out, the state’s warnings were accurate. Breen said the storm’s winds took down 24 trees across Lynnfield. “A couple of houses got hit,” he said, adding that a tree had fallen in his driveway. In addition, a tree came down in front of Lynnfield High School and another tree fell on Debston Lane. Breen also said he was “amazed” that the power lines at the intersection of Highland Avenue and Summer Street remained intact after a tree fell on them.

According to the SKYWARN Weather Spotter Network, 60 m.p.h. winds were recorded in neighboring Wakefield.

“Our guys were just going from call to call,” said Breen. Speaking about call volume, he said the department took 58 calls for service during the storm. On Feb. 23, one week prior, there were 28 calls for service.

However, John Tomasz, director of the Department of Public Works, shared a different opinion. He said he had a tree service lined up and chainsaws ready to go, but the storm did not inflict the level of damage that he anticipated.

Joyce Mulvaney, spokesman for the Reading Municipal Light Department, said about 700 customers in seven parts of town lost power during the storm. “The largest area outage impacted 600 customers in the Lowell Street/North Main Street area and was repaired in less than 15 minutes,” she said.

In addition, Breen said residences on Putney Lane and the section of Main Street by Sagamore Spring Golf Course were without power for several hours.

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