JAMESTOWN, N.D. — A strong thunderstorm caused several trees to fall on Tuesday, Aug. 6, resulting in damage to homes and vehicles in the Cleveland and Windsor areas, about 20 miles west of Jamestown.
Bill Abeling, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Bismarck, said high temperatures and low moisture created unstable air for the thunderstorm to grow.
"The western parts of Stutsman County saw some of the worst of the storm," Abeling said. "A lot of the damage was caused by trees ... larger trees like that, it would be fair to say winds could have gotten up to 75 to 90 mph."
Shirley Kassemborg, of Cleveland, had a tree collapse onto the roof of her home during the storm.
"It happened so fast," Kassemborg said. "You knew something was coming once that wind started, and when it did, we went right down to the basement."
The storm began around 5:45 p.m. and lasted about 30 minutes, according to Kassemborg.
"It was just fast and furious," Kassemborg said.
Kassemborg's neighbor, Todd Mulske, helped remove parts of the debris from her roof early Wednesday morning.
Terry Lynne Wanzek, of Windsor, also had tree damage following the storm.
"I thought a window broke, but it was a tree snapping outside the house," Wanzek said. "It was frightening. The cat wouldn't come upstairs for two hours after the storm."
Wanzek said most of the damage was from fallen trees and branches, and one tree, an old cottonwood, blocked the family's driveway and prevented her from leaving on Wednesday morning.
"I had a doctor's appointment I had to cancel," Wanzek said. "If it was an emergency I could have drove off in the ditch, but I didn't want to do that."
But the doctor's appointment wasn't the only thing the storm made Wanzek miss.
"We've lived here for 25 years ... farmed here for 40," Wanzek said. "It's going to be weird not driving by the old cottonwood in the driveway every day.
"The wind was unbelievable," she said.
Wanzek said a lot of work needs to be done to clean up the aftermath, including contacting AT&T and Sprint. She said one of the trees uprooted in the storm is right next to the cables running through the ground of the property.
Wanzek also plans to replace the cottonwood tree that stood tall in her dirt driveway.
"They don't really plant them anymore," Wanzek said. "But ours was beautiful. I'm going to plant another one."