Heavy rains and fierce winds whipped the Puget Sound region late Tuesday night through early Wednesday morning, and Federal Way residents didn’t go unscathed.
Around midnight Jan. 12 near the 32900 block of 2nd Place SW in Federal Way, the top half of a tree fell and crushed a car. No one was injured, but the car’s owners and neighbors were forced to pick up the pieces the next day.
The car belonged to the son of residents Louis and Kili Cambra, who was about to sell the car to purchase a new car for himself. Due to his coverage plan, the insurance isn’t able to cover the damage, Louis Cambra said. Louis’s Ford F150 truck, which had been parked behind his son’s car on the street, was also damaged by the fallen tree.
The still-standing bottom half of the tree sits between the Cambras’ property and their next door neighbor, Jason O’Daniel.
O’Daniel and his family moved to Federal Way in September 2006. Two months later that year, a tree fell on the roof of their home. Ever since then, stormy nights are a worry for O’Daniel.
“When it’s super windy, the kids and I sleep downstairs and I can’t sleep,” he said. “It freaks me out.”
O’Daniel had gone to sleep early Tuesday night and didn’t hear the tree fall, but assumes his dogs did because they started barking. He looked out the window, saw the damage and texted the Cambras.
They decided to leave the tree until morning and assess the destruction in the daylight.
On Wednesday morning, neighbors and friends of the Cambras brought chainsaws and helping hands to cut up and remove the tree from the car and roadway. The half of the tree that fell had reached across the road and into the neighbor’s driveway.
“Just feels like we can’t catch a break,” Louis Cambra said.
Several power outages due to high winds and fallen trees dotted the area, leaving more than 315,000 Puget Sound Energy customers without power as of 4:30 a.m. Jan. 13, according to the PSE website.
In King County, Federal Way recorded the highest peak wind gust at 61 mph at 1:01 a.m. Jan. 13. SeaTac recorded a 58 mph wind at 12:45 a.m. and Des Moines recorded a 54 mph wind at 12:10 a.m., according to the National Weather Service.