Several schools across Pleasanton, as well as the Sunol Glen School, were forced to close for the day as the Tri-Valley continues to experience power outages and downed trees due to the recent atmospheric river storm.
The storm system that swept through the region on Tuesday produced strong and damaging winds, with peak wind gusts of 72 to 73 miles per hour in Pleasanton and Livermore, according to the National Weather Service.
“In the last day and a half, the city has received reports of 97 incidents, including downed trees and power lines, damaged buildings, blocked roads and out of traffic lights,” Pleasanton communications manager Heather Tiernan told the Weekly. “We deployed additional crews yesterday but were able to resume normal staffing today.”
At the time of publication, around 3,000 residents in South Pleasanton in the Shadow Cliffs and Bernal Avenue areas are still without power as of noon yesterday. According to the PG&E Outage Center, the estimated recovery time is 6:00 p.m
Miles north in the unincorporated area of the Alamo, about 1,670 customers have also been without power since 10:30 a.m. and should expect power to return around 7:00 p.m
In Pleasanton, Hearst Elementary, Vintage Hills Elementary and Pleasanton Middle School were all closed Wednesday due to ongoing power outages that began Tuesday night.
According to the Pleasanton Unified School District’s social media pages, all three schools experienced first-time power outages on Tuesday, including Mohr Elementary School — which was not among the schools that closed Wednesday because they regained power in time.
All other schools in the district remained open.
“We are still investigating the damage caused by the high winds, ranging from damaged sidewalks to roofs caused by fallen trees,” Patrick Gannon, PUSD communications director, told Weekly. “We are grateful to our maintenance team for their assistance in mitigating the damage and to our families for their patience and support.”
Sunol also experienced a power outage Tuesday night at the Sunol Glen School, according to Molleen Barnes, superintendent and principal of the Sunol Glen Unified School District.
Barnes told the Weekly that two fuses blew right next to the school and a pole fell around the corner of the school.
“Fortunately there was no damage to the school from yesterday’s and today’s power outages,” Barnes said. “But due to the power outage we had to cancel school for that day. At the moment the power is still out and the PG&E website is listed as restored at 2pm today.”
Because of the failure, the Sunol school board also had to cancel its board meeting on Tuesday.
In Dublin, the Dublin Unified School District didn’t see many problems with power outages other than a brief phone and internet outage at one of their school sites, according to DUSD Public Information and Community Relations Officer Chip Dehnert.
He said a tree had fallen in one of the schools and in other schools it was mainly branches falling and debris being blown around.
The worst is mostly over, according to the National Weather Service, as dry weather is expected through at least Thursday and temperatures in the interior warm up into the mid-60s each afternoon.
Aside from the power outages, downed trees continued to devastate the Tri-Valley Tuesday night through Wednesday morning.
According to Tiernan, Pleasanton received an injury report from a tree falling on a local resident’s garage.
“During yesterday’s wind event, there was damage and widespread power outages across the city,” she said. “As of Wednesday afternoon, March 15, the city has reported seven buildings as moderately damaged and in need of repair, but has not had to report any buildings within the city’s jurisdiction as unsafe for occupancy. Most of the damage was relatively minor and non-compromise buildings.”
Ken Mano, a longtime Pleasanton resident, was one of the people who downed a tree in his Mohr Avenue neighborhood.
“Our neighbor called the city and was told it could be a while for so many trees to fall,” Mano told the Weekly.
He said the tree fell around 1 p.m. Tuesday afternoon and that city workers came around 3 p.m. to clear the debris. He added that even if they finish by 5:00 p.m., other city workers still have to go Wednesday morning to clean up more of the logs.
He also noticed that a tree had fallen on a neighbor’s driveway three houses down from him, and was even more grateful to the city’s Operations Services Department for all the work they’ve done over the past few days.
“They even went three houses down where a tree fell on a neighbor’s driveway and cleared it, although it wasn’t blocking the road,” Mano said. “She had just run an errand, came home and the tree had landed right where her car was parked before the errand. We were all blessed, happy, fortunate that no one was hurt and there was no damage to our property.”
However, the storm managed to cause some serious damage, such as: B. the fallen tree that destroyed the nursery wing of the historic Lighthouse Baptist Church at Neal Street and Second Street in Pleasanton.
And while there have been no trees falling on a right of way or causing damage or dangerous conditions in Dublin, Livermore has a current dangerous road condition heading north on Vasco Road.
Rainwater from the hills washed away the shoulder of the road between Garaventa Ranch Road and Dalton Avenue, exposing an electrical line, according to the City of Livermore Twitter page.
City crews are actively working on repairs.
Then in Danville, other than the power outages, the city had relatively little impact on public properties overnight, according to Public Information Officer Jenn Starnes.
“A tree on public property has fallen into nearby backyards. We have not received reports of any other trees that may have fallen on private property, so I can’t say if there were more,” Starnes told the Weekly. “The two road closures have now been cleared. Maintenance crews will be working this week clearing debris from public right-of-way areas and expect to continue clearing debris across the city through next week.”
Pleasanton currently has no road closures on city-maintained roads. Alameda County closed Pleasanton Sunol Road on Castlewood Drive, but the road is expected to open by the end of the day on March 16, according to Tiernan.