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Falling tree crushes car, closes University Avenue

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Cruising along University Avenue is common for Gainesville drivers, but one woman found her mid-day drive to be anything but routine Thursday.

Dispatch at the Gainesville Police Department received a call at about 1:45 p.m. regarding a large tree that had fallen across University Avenue near NW 27th Terrace, pulling down power lines and blocking traffic on both sides of the road. A woman heading westbound in a red, two-door Mitsubishi soft-top convertible when the tree toppled over the vehicle, leaving her trapped inside.

Fire rescue workers and the police department worked with Gainesville Regional Utilities to safely extract the woman from her car. She was taken to Shands hospital with minor injuries. The tree struck another vehicle, but the driver was not injured.

Gainesville Police Department Public Information Officer Ben Tobias said a gust of wind could have caused the fall.

“The base of the tree, there’s not a lot of roots to it, and a gust of wind or something must have taken it over,” he said.

Officials said that University Avenue will be closed until the tree is removed and the power lines are fixed.

George Pappas wrote this story for online.

About Ethan Magoc

Ethan is a journalist at WUFT News. He's a Pennsylvania native who found a home reporting Florida's stories. Reach him by emailing emagoc@wuft.org or calling 352-294-1525.

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