Falling Tree Stuns and Injures Driver on Humphrey Street

The driver of the SUV was transported to Massachusetts General Hospital.


A 61-year-old driver from Marblehead was transported to Massachusetts General Hospital on Tuesday about 2:30 pm after a tree fell on his SUV while it was traveling toward Lynn on Humphrey Street. 

The unidentified driver was stunned by the tree falling on the vehicle's roof and hood, according Swampscott fire and

No information was immediately available on the man's condition. We wil report his identity and condition as that information is released.

This was the second time since Saturday that a tree had fallen on a vehicle in Swampscott.

The first falling tree fell on a house and a parked vehicle in the driveway at 57 Buena Vista St. on Saturday afternoon about the same time as Tuesday's falling tree. 

On Tuesday, a part of the tree may have come through the vehicle's sunroof and struck the driver, said Capt. John Quinn.

The passenger, a woman, took control of the vehicle's steering wheel from the passenger's seat, and, reaching her leg over to the brake pedal, brought the vehicle to a stop, the fire captain said.

The tree fell in the vicinity of 565 Humphrey St, near the, and the car came to a stop about 1/10 of a mile away at the intersection of Humphrey and Cedar Hill Terrace. 

When Swampscott firefighters arrived a Swampscott police officer had stabilized the man, the fire captain said.

Firefighters placed a brace on his neck and backboard below him before helping medics place him in an ambulance.

The injured man was conscious, the fire captain said.

The tree looked like a maple and was about 24-inches around. It was growing several feet off the sidewalk among dense vegetation including vines at the bottom of a ledge-filled hill.

The tree broke near the base and looked like it had weakened over time and fallen on its own.

A crew responded to the scene and loaded the tree into a dump truck and hauled it to a DPW location at the back of the Swampscott Cemetery, said DPW Director Gino Cresta.

The DPW director said this was the first time he recalled a tree landing on a moving vehicle in town.

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Liz September 06, 2012 at 08:17 PM
David, you are correct, our DPW is sorely lacking in being pro-active and taking care of what they should be taking care of....poor management....poor poor management... we use to have a DPW Board and a manager...now we have a Director...fancy....
powderpuff79 September 07, 2012 at 01:07 AM
no way, i'm not letting my taxes go up any to see if some tree is dead. we don't have money to just throw around, for these guys to look at trees all day.
David Arsenault September 07, 2012 at 01:31 AM
I work for a DPW. It takes one person and it doesn't have to be a all day event. Someone with a trained eye can spot these trees without spending much time. My boss carrys a orange spray can and marks them. He does this periodically during the year and it doesn't take long. No extra money is needed to spot dead or ant infested trees. Sometimes if the tree is capable of breaking power lines national grid will pay to remove them, just like the State of MA paying to fix drainage for their highways.
Bridget Russo September 07, 2012 at 12:16 PM
I had a tree that was the towns and it fell on my lawn. Took them two years to remove it and that's after another part of it fell on the street. The town told me that I had to put in a request to some dept to decide if it was ok to bring down. I finally said that if they don't take it down they will have to keep cleaning up the mess. It was down in a couple of days. That's on top of the biannual sewer flooding in my home. Soooo glad I sold that place!
Restless September 07, 2012 at 02:18 PM
I had to fight for nearly a year to get a town tree that was largely dead and leaning towards my house removed. I made bi monthly visits to the DPW office to find out when the next tree meeting was and to ensure it was on the list. I provided photos of the tree in all seasons showing lack of foliage and how rotten it was at the base. We even threatened a lawsuit if it fell on our house as one of the kids bedrooms was in it's path. The DPW finally felled it and to their credit did a good job and smoothed out the buckled sidewalk really nicely. Should not take so long though.


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