Robbinsdale assesses damages after severe storm

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Thunderstorms were strong enough in the west metro, specifically around Robbinsdale, that the National Weather Service is sending a crew to assess the damage.

A tree was uprooted on the north shore of Crystal Lake, and just across the street, a couple of large tree branches nearly fell on the bleachers at Sanborn Park. Those are just a couple of examples of the damage the storm created.

Early Saturday morning, as a Robbinsdale city crew assessed that damage, many neighbors woke up to start their own cleanup. A tree big enough to likely be decades old snapped in half and damaged two homes near Zenith and 40th avenues north.

The NWS on Saturday confirmed that an EF-0 tornado had touched down near Crystal around 7:55 p.m., causing damage in New Hope and Robbinsdale as well.

Many watched from the safety of their homes late Friday night as storms — at times triggering tornado warnings — rolled through their west metro neighborhood around 8 p.m. Others were caught off guard while outside.

“It was powerful. It scared me,” Frank Gonzalez said. “Sure did,” he added while looking at a tree that was uprooted.

Gonzalez and a friend were in a car when the storms rolled through Robbinsdale. They pulled into an alley to try and find as much shelter as possible, but he said it was still very intense.

“When we were looking down the road, we saw lightning hit the tree and it split one of those oak trees in half. Man, it was pretty amazing stuff,” Gonzalez said.

He and his friend were not hurt. That’s the case statewide as well. No major injuries to report as most of the state started the weekend cleaning up.