High winds kill Massachusetts couple, leave thousands without power

Dangerously high winds caused the death of a Massachusetts couple Sunday morning and left thousands of people without power as storms brought snow, thunder, rain and wind to the Northeast.

Authorities said 49-year-old Franklin and 51-year-old Manuela Teixeira were killed when a tree fell on their BMW sedan as they were driving down a street in Abington, Mass. Sunday morning. 

“It’s just an unfortunate circumstance,” Abington police chief David Majenski told WFXT. Witness Brian Easton called the tragedy “a freak accident.”

More than 29,000 were still without power Sunday night. More than half of the outages were in Pennsylvania and New Jersey. At the height of the storm Sunday afternoon, utilities reported 46,000 outages in New Jersey and 18,000 in Pennsylvania. By late Sunday, there were 8,000 in New Jersey and 10,000 in Pennsylvania.

National Weather Service meteorologist Faye Barthold told the Associated Press wind gusts of up to 45 miles per hour were recorded in Manhattan’s Central Park. Sustained gusts of 64 mph hit Kennedy Airport.

The high winds also swept across New England. Maine utility crews were still restoring power to more than 3,100 customers who lost power mainly due to winds knocking tree limbs onto power lines.

Electricity companies reported more than 18,000 outages in Massachusetts, over 7,000 in Connecticut and several hundred in Rhode Island Sunday afternoon.

High winds also caused more than 2,500 outages in New York City and New York’s Westchester County and fewer than 15,000 outages in Long Island.

More unsettled weather was expected in the northeast Monday, as 3 to 6 inches of snow was forecast for parts of southern New England, with 1 to 3 inches predicted for other parts of the region.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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