NORTH ADAMS, Mass. — First responders were kept busy on Monday as high winds pummeled the region, taking down trees and power lines. National Grid trucks and Asplundh tree removal trucks, along with local departments of public works vehicles, were ubiquitous as the utility tried to keep pace with the calls.
The National Weather Service reported gusts as high as 69 mph in Adams and 66 mph recorded at both Harriman-West Airport and Pittsfield Municipal Airport at around noontime.
The high winds preceded a cold front moving into the area from the west that left thousands out of power across the Midwest.
National Grid had stationed teams across its coverage area on Sunday ahead of the storm. It reported nearly 40,000 customers without power across New York and Massachusetts by late Monday afternoon. More than 2,000 customers largely in Williamstown and Lanesborough were affected.
Eversource reported nearly 8,000 customers out in Western Massachusetts, including more than 4,000 in Pittsfield. The Berkshire Crossing plaza was reportedly affected and a number of the stores closed.
Pittsfield Police posted photos of a large tree that fell on Wendell Avenue and cautioned motorists that intersections controlled by traffic lights may not be functioning properly.
Mount Greylock Regional Middle and High School was without since 1:15 p.m. Monday after a tree on Cold Spring Road pulled down wires and broke a utility pole; school officials late Monday evening cancelled school for Tuesday because power would not be restored. Water Street between Ide Road and Meacham Street was also closed in Williamstown when a large tree came down across the road sometime after 2 p.m. There were several reports of trees down in Williamstown, including one on a house on Northwest Hill. A large tree blocked Route 2 near the bottom of the Taconic Trail in Williamstown earlier in the morning and more trees came down in the afternoon on wires near the truck escape ramp.
A tree blocked River Road not far from the Vermont border in the afternoon, forcing traffic to divert over Henderson Road in Clarksburg and The Lane in Stamford, Vt.
A billboard blew over on State Street in North Adams and city police and firefighters responded to numerous calls throughout the city about trees and wires down, debris in the road and fire alarms going off. Adams toned out the fire wardens to aid with a downed tree on Airport Road.
The gusty winds blew debris — largely sticks and small tree limbs — across roads, pelting motor vehicles.
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