Featured Stories

Home damaged by downed tree in St. Helens

Tuesday evening winds cause a tree to fall on St. Helens family's home, injuring one

PHOTO COURTESY OF COLUMBIA RIVER FIRE AND RESCUE - A downed pine tree fell on the home of Dan and Mary West on Tuesday, Nov. 17. Two people were upstairs in the home when the tree fell, but no serious injuries were reported.Heavy rains and strong winds caused a tree to fall on a home in St. Helens, displacing a family on Tuesday, Nov. 17.

Columbia River Fire and Rescue received a call at 4:59 p.m. Tuesday afternoon from homeowner Dan West, who reported a downed tree on his home at 35356 Helens Way. Three of the five family members were home at the time.

Dan West said his daughter, Sarah, and son, Corey, were in the upstairs loft of the home when the tree fell. His wife, Mary, and son, Jacob, were not home at the time.

Corey West received minor scratches from rafters that fell, Dan West said. No other members of the family were injured.

The pine tree fell across the family’s backyard from outside a fence, according to Fire Chief Jay Tappan. Dan West said the falling tree sounded “like an earthquake, but to a greater extent.”

Dan West said the family is staying at a local hotel for now, at least until the family can arrange for temporary housing. The West family received immediate help from the American Red Cross the night of the incident, according to a press release from the Kim Upham, American Red Cross Cascades Region Communications Volunteer.

Dan West said the family is now working with its insurance, family and friends to figure out what its next steps are.

“I think we’re really good, considering. Obviously it’s a tragic deal; you’re displaced from your home, but we’re in good spirits,” Dan West said.

Heavy winds also caused a tree to fall in the Goble area, blocking the roadway at 757174 Debast Road for 45 minutes. No damage to nearby cable wires was caused.