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Huge tree falls across College Avenue

A fallen tree at College Avenue and 12th Street has forced Claremont officials to close off roadways early this morning. Police received a call around 5 a.m. regarding a historic Eucalyptus that had fallen diagonally across College Avenue, completely blocking off the roadway, according to Watch Commander Joe Maddox.

Cesar Hernandez, who lives on the 1200 block of College Avenue, was awoken around 4:50 a.m. to a tumultuous crashing sound outside his home.

“It was like an earthquake without the rumble, but we knew right away it was a tree because of the crunching sound. Also, you could smell it,” Mr. Hernandez said. “We were surprised no one else came out to see what happened.”

Diane Fox, who lives next door to the Hernandez family, admits to sleeping through the noise, only waking when her husband found the damage when leaving for work around 5:30. Ms. Fox was saddened to hear of loss of one of the neighborhood trees.

“I love this street; it is so beautiful with the trees. You always see people walking around and admiring them,” she said.

Ms. Fox, who had a tree limb crush her children’s playhouse at her last residence in La Verne, is thankful no one was harmed, constantly reflecting on what could have happened to her children if they had been in their playhouse that fateful day.

Though no person was harmed from the fall, a nearby car did receive minor damage. The fallen Eucalyptus appears to have uprooted, and does not show signs of tampering, according to Watch Commander Joe Maddox.

West Coast Arborists, Inc., is on the scene, and currently working on cutting and removing the tree. Police expect the roadways to remain closed until about noon, said Mr. Maddox.

—Beth Hartnett

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