Family forced out of home after tree crashes through roof


DETROIT – Power has been restored to just about all of the homes knocked out during Monday's windstorm. But there is still some significant damage left behind.

On Detroit's east side, a tree on Maxwell Street was uprooted, and at any moment could crush a family's home. Because of the danger, the family has been forced out for the holiday.

Arnita Townsend said she warned city officials about the old tree in front of her 80-year-old mother and 95-year-old aunt's house.

"They said the tree would be cut down by Nov. 16," Townsend said. "Nobody came out and the storm came along."

Heavy winds ripped the tree right out of the ground, causing the tree to fall onto the roof of the house.

"They could've been hurt, because my aunt's room is right there in the front and moms room is in the back," Townsend said.

No one was hurt, but it was a big blow to their Thanksgiving plans. Townsend said it's family tradition to eat in the house, where they grew up.

"It's got a lot of space," she said. "We can move around, have a good time. She knows that kitchen."

But now it's too risky to be in the home.

"It's going to go through the house," Townsend said.

Thanksgiving dinner has been moved to Townsend's home. She said it really doesn't matter where the family gathers as long as they're safe together.

As soon as Local 4 heard about the problem, we got on the phone with city officials and told them about the problem. They got back with us late Wednesday evening saying that the Forestry Department will be at the home bright and early in the morning to work on the tree.

City officials say due to the recent heavy winds, there are more than 100 trees down throughout city, but that they should have them cleared by Saturday.