Construction workers at the new Albertson's grocery store on North Carson Street had a rude awakening Wednesday morning when they saw walls had been toppled and steel girders dislodged by gale-force winds.
Gusts of 65 mph Tuesday night knocked down the walls, tore up roofs, toppled trees and generally wreaked havoc on the Carson City area. Cost of the damage was not known.
"We have to tear down at least part of this and start over," said Bill DeLong, superintendant of general contractor Engineered Structures Inc. on the Albertson's project. "These walls are designed for a heck of a wind load," he said, shaking his head. DeLong isn't sure how much of a setback this will have on the April 2002 opening date.
Earl Slead, of east Carson City, was going out to collect his Nevada Appeal around 7:30 a.m. when he realized the 60-foot-tall pine tree that has graced that spot in his yard for at least 32 years was now lying across his chain-link fence.
"We didn't hear a thing," Slead said. Slead is not sure what he will do with the tree or how to get it out of his yard.
"If someone needs a big Christmas tree, here it is." He said anyone interested in the tree may call him at 882-4870.
"This is some great lumber. I know someone will be able to use it."
Albert Satterfield said his neighbor, the Days Inn on North Carson Street, was piled with tumbleweeds from Tuesday night's winds.
"It's kind of neat," he said. "There are tumbleweeds halfway up the building. The stairwells are all packed with tumbleweeds, and the fences are all knocked down."
Residents of Silver Oak woke to find huge sections of fence blown down along Ormsby Boulevard.
"Last night we heard this big thud," said Carol, a resident who asked her last name not be used. "We looked outside to see if there was anything wrong, but didn't see anything. This morning I looked out and a huge 20-foot section is missing from our fence."
Her neighbors also lost a section of fence, and about two blocks away a big tree was toppled.
"Whatever it was, it was big," she said. "It looked like it came between the two houses."
Damaged roof reports came from several locations, including the Carson City Utility Department and Empire Elementary School.
Most of Wednesday was wet and cold, and more weather along these lines is expected through the weekend, said Bob Melrose, of the National Weather Service.
"Thanksgiving Day will be windy with a chance of rain. Snow levels will lower to 6,000 feet in the afternoon," he said. Highs are expected to be in the 50s with winds at 20-30 mph.
Friday will see a 60 percent chance of precipitation, with highs in the mid 40s to mid 50s.
Southwest winds will be 15 to 20 mph. A chance of snow is forecast for Saturday and Sunday.