Summer’s Second Strong Storm

Just 18 hours after yesterday’s tree-downing, power-outing storm, a more brutal one — with even less warning — roared through town.

At the Westport Library, the Saugatuck River is nearly obscured by wind-driven rain. (Photo/Fred Cantor)

Packing winds of about 60 miles an hour, plus hail, this one followed by a few seconds an alert from the National Weather Service.

One umbrella hit this home’s window “like a torpedo.” (Photo/Marty Jaramillo)

In its wake, over 1,500 customers were without power. Trees blocked South Compo Road, Narrow Rocks, Jennie Lane, Mayflower Parkway and the Ned Dimes Marina at Compo Beach. Tents for the downtown Sidewalk Sale were uprooted on Main Street.

Hillandale Road, near West Parish. (Photo/Robin Gusick)

Just a couple of hours earlier, the forecast was for mostly sunny skies.

Mayflower Parkway (Photo/Andrew Colabella)

As of right now — 3:50 pm — the skies over Westport are clear and bright.

The deluge did not last long — but it was intense. (Photo/Jilda Manikas)

Tonight and tomorrow’s forecast calls for sunny and clear weather too.

Beachgoers fled Compo. (Photo/Bruce McFadden)

Westport’s marine police assisted a sailboat in distress. (Photo/Bruce McFadden)

Umbrellas were tossed into the water … (Photo/Bruce McFadden)

… and all around Joey’s. (Photo/Bruce McFadden)

The storm even toppled a tough-to-move lifeguard chair. (Photo/Bruce McFadden)

Amazingly, just moments before the storm hit, this advertising plane flew over Compo Beach. Its message: “Keep calm – Call Tom Atty.” (Photo/Beverly Bailey)

14 responses to “Summer’s Second Strong Storm

  1. Dianne Quagliariello

    Love your blog, Dan! You are so on-top of all that’s happening in our town & so quick to post! Fabulous photos, too! We were some of those beachgoers who fled Compo & came upon a few similar looking detours due to fallen limbs. Beautiful now! ☀️

    • Thanks, Dianne! We’re all in this together. I am told that South Compo is still a mess, with trees down from near Greens Farms all the way to the beach. If anyone needs any help, please post here. Your fellow Westporters will do what we can.

  2. Mary Cookman Schmerker

    When I saw the post about yesterday’s storm I thought Oh No! I hope what went through here ( Houston Texas area) yesterday doesn’t hit Westport. I guess it did, or bare with me here, it didn’t and another one might be on its way. The Houston airport had a ground stop and the hail was recorded as “snow’.

  3. Bill Coley (Staples ‘67)

    What a difference a few miles make. In Orange (20 miles east of Westport) we only got a few sprinkles this afternoon. Last night’s storm produced some high winds and hail here, but no damage other than lots of small sticks on the lawn. Now we’ll all have to wait and see what happens this evening!

  4. Wendy Cusick

    Huge tree at Grace K. Salmon Park down uprooted at it’s roots.
    Not sure if was from today or yesterday


    Holy cow. You ok?

    Carol L Barrett


  6. Wendy Cusick

    Update. Make that 3 huge trees in Grace Salmon Park on Imperial Ave

  7. Berndale Drive is a mess with several trees down within 100 feet. Mini-tornado? The noise within that 60 seconds or so was pretty scary!

  8. Fred Cantor

    Thanks for posting my pic. I can’t remember experiencing such a fierce sudden windstorm with rain blowing horizontally like that.

    PS—fabulous photo by Beverly Bailey.

  9. Irene Mastriacovo

    Power outages too! Hubby just came back from CVS Compo and its closed due to loss of power. Hope the storm didn’t cause any personal injuries.

  10. Sharon Paulsen

    I just posted a comment on “storm #1” from yesterday, and now reading about this one … it’s like, “yikes”!

    Some of these pop-up storms probably had enough fuel to generate micro-bursts/downdrafts type of phenomena (the “mini-tornado” that someone mentioned here).

    Things are-a-chang’in on this earth, and right quick.

    The new normal.

    And, rapidly, each new “abnormal” will have to be placed into the new “normal” list, which is growing.

    I’m a tad bit more than worried. Our aging infrastructure cannot sustain continuous climate onslaughts that are happening all over.

    Germany is melting right now. Fun. Wonder how their infrastructure is? Probably better that ours, but I really don’t know with any certainty.

    Anyway, hope everyone is safe/unharmed from all of this.

  11. Cathy Barnett

    I went to Whole Foods on the way back home to Norwalk. Decided to park in the back of the lot near the Post Road because of cars backing out in front. Took my umbrella in case it might rain. Shopped and went up front to check out. People were gasping, looking out the window at the white sheet of rain pummeling the parking lot. Lights were flickering but didn’t go out. Storm lasted about 10 min, drove PR home, sun came out as if nothing ever happened!

  12. During the 7 minutes rain, hail and wind stirm we heard 2 incredibly loud explosions and then smelled electrical burning. The boxes on Weston Rd outside our house and live wires on the ground were all on fire (with the wires still smoldering over an hour later). Just down from that at Sipperlys Hill a massive tree was laying across the wires and hanging completely across Weston Rd with more live wires down there. We called 911 but no one was showing up. So, Frederic and I at one end, along with 2 people from Weston at the other, put up our own cones and stood in the road directing cars at each end to turn around so they wouldn’t drive over the wires. This storm happened at 3, and it took an hour for just one police officer in an SUV to arrive at 4. He put one plastic yellow caution strip across Weston Rd at the tree end and left, leaving the end we were directing open without letting us know he left. We just kept directing people away until another resident came with flares which we put with the cones. The fire dept showed up around 4:30 and added another single yellow plastic strip across the road where our cones were and left the cones also. (We finally went in because the Fire Department said it was dangerous for us to be on the street with the water and wires.) Then they left and, this being Weston Rd (fast!) people just blew by through the cones and ripped through the tape – getting to the live wires and downed tree and had to turn around. The whole situation was very dangerous and there didn’t seem to be enough resources to manage all the crises at once, leaving a main road with trees and live wires down mainly unattended. Eversource showed up at night and power was restored at 3AM. Crazy impact from such a short storm!