Portage homeowners shocked by massive tree taken down by storm, missing house

Posted at 9:14 PM, Sep 03, 2018
and last updated 2018-09-03 22:35:23-04

PORTAGE, Mich.-- Jim Moreland and his wife were in their driveway on Monday evening when a massive tree in their front yard fell down during a severe thunderstorm.

Moreland estimates the tree is about 200 years old and has never seen this kind of damage in the 15 years he's lived in his home on Sprinkle Road.

“We were sitting in our driveway, it started raining real hard and my wife said, ‘let’s don’t leave yet,'" Moreland tells FOX 17. "So we sat there and few minutes later, all of a sudden we’re seeing a tree come down and sparks flying.”

The tree took down several power lines, causing most of the block to lose power. It also blocked traffic on Sprinkle Road for several hours.

“Well the sooner the better they open the driveway up and then would like the power on as soon as possible but I don’t think, it’ll take a while," Moreland says. "They got a lot of work to do.”

Winds in the Portage and Kalamazoo area reached between 40 and 50 mph, according to FOX 17 Meteorologist Kevin Craig.

According to Craig, because the tree was uprooted and not broken in half, it was likely the over-saturated grounds mixed with some wind that caused the tree to come down.

In the past two weeks, the area has gotten between five to six inches of rain.

Consumers Energy and the City of Portage worked for several hours on Monday evening to clean up the scene.