'Extremely terrifying' - Stevenage resident on Storm Ciara near miss
PUBLISHED: 18:12 10 February 2020
A Stevenage resident has described a near miss that could have seriously injured her and her daughter as "extremely terrifying" after Storm Ciara ripped through Stevenage over the weekend.
Katy Parry, of Oakfields in Stevenage, was packing her car in preparation for her daughter's dance class when a tree was blown over in a gust, trapping both her and her daughter underneath.
Describing this "extremely terrifying" experience, Katy said: "It all happened so quickly. All I could hear were my daughter's screams for help.
"My gut reaction was to try and pull her out of the way, but we were trapped. It was absolute carnage."
Fortunately for Katy, neither her nor her daughter sustained any serious injuries. Her car has been written off and the pair remain in a state of shock after their near miss.
Katy said: "At the end of the day, we were very lucky.
"A few inches here or there and it could have been a completely different story. I definitely think someone was looking over us."
Katy and her daughter were rescued by a passer-by who heard their cries for help. He rushed over to lift the debris off of them and used a saw to cut the pair free.
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Katy says she is "grateful for his help" and would like for him to get in touch with her so she can thank him.
But some people who live in the area say this situation could have been avoided if Stevenage Borough Council had responded to their concerns over the foliage in the area years ago.
A group of Oakfields residents say that they contacted the council about removal of the trees in 2015.
They say they were told their request had been put on a waiting list, but five years later and the residents say they have never seen any action taken over these trees.
Reacting to this, Katy said: "SBC were told about the dangers of these rotting trees years ago, but nothing happened.
"I feel like this situation could have been avoided."
SBC have been contacted for comment.
Earlier today, Herts Highways tweeted: "Storm Ciara kept us busy yesterday.
"We received 445 reports of fallen trees and vegetation, however our contractor Ringways dealt with emergencies as soon as possible to help keep the network clear."